Azriel's shadows whenever they see Elain
Breaking my anti-e*riel silence to serve up some E*riel logic:
Yeah, it’s mentioned that Azriel walks Elain to the garden, but we don’t know that he stayed there with her. In fact, we didn’t see the garden scene so did it even happen?
If Azriel in fact stayed, we didn’t see the conversation so I bet he called her a “dingus” then stomped on her flowers and Elain actually hates him and pretends she doesn’t.
I mean we never are in Elain’s head. We don’t know that she actually likes him. She’s just pretending probably.
Bottom line, if we’re only told about it by the narrator and in canon but don’t see it did it really happen?
… Do see you how fucking stupid this argument is?
Rules for Spies: Chapter Twenty
Summary: While Azriel and Gwyn work to free Koschei’s captives, attraction turns into something more.
Chapter Word Count: 5,648
Warnings: There are no warnings for this chapter, but this fic includes mature consensual sexual situations, references to past assault, and torture.
Art & Banner: cosmikla
All chapters are available on Archive of Our Own. All previous chapters linked here.
“Are you cold, little spy?”
Gwyn wakes to Koschei’s breath on her ear, his shadows swarming the branch on which she’d perched to get out of the snow. Beyond the roiling darkness, the forest is gray, still in the hours just before dawn.
“Surely you can guess,” she says, too tired to smooth her temper.
She’s rewarded with a small explosion of pain behind her temple, but her mind remains clear.
“Your kinsfolk are coming soon,” he says, in that same self-satisfied croon, as if she had not spoken. “And then we will be joined, you and I. After that, you will not be so cold or so angry. I can promise that your life will be far more pleasant.”
“I would like to know more.”
As she says it, she opens her awareness to the frequencies around her. In this form, Koschei is distinct from his presence inside Merrill, and there’s a fortress around his inner self, built of onyx a mile wide. She will need the shadows to get inside. But in the meantime, she gathers up the snatches of melody and countermelody as she pretends to listen to him.
From Koschei’s tone alone, she knows there’s more lie than truth in his words. But as he speaks of his women, the warriors and queens and scholars who serve him, who remake the world according to his vision, she tries to nod and smile, imagining what such a thing could be if it were true.
Even as she tries to think it, tries to listen, tries to unlock the keys to command the death-god, Gwyn feels the shadows, his presence, move inside her mind.
I can sense your power, my siren, he says.
She cannot get inside his mind, but behind her own mental shields, she holds tight to Vassa’s words -- let him think you are weak -- as she unleashes the melody that will command him. Hoping one of Azriel’s shadows is nearby. That it’s listening.
That, in the meantime, Koschei thinks this is the only attack she can make, feeble and unconsidered.
No hand touches her, but she is falling, the shadows with Koschei’s voice surrounding her, making it impossible to see the ground.
Still, by some miracle of grace or training, Gwyn rolls into the snow, springing to her feet.
“Too weak by far, little spy.”
These words are spoken, echoing in the woods. For the moment, he hasn’t taken root inside her mind. Could it be that the death-god is frightened of her power?
But Koschei will not admit defeat. Within seconds, the shadows cover her eyes, land like blows on her legs and shoulders, grinding her back against the icy snow. Gwyn does not bother to hold back her cries. He cannot kill her, or break her irrevocably, not if Beron is coming. Let him think she is weak.
Sooner than Gwyn anticipates, the being of shadows disappears, pulling his absent magic with him. Her cheek is swollen but she can’t help a smile.
Her moment is coming, and she will not be useless.
The shadow returns to him with a song that is more cacophony than melody, but it sings those notes over and over until all of Azriel’s shadows echo it, heedless of the fact that they’re in midair, that as they approach Koschei’s lake, they must go quiet. Next to him, Cassian focuses on flying, but in his arms, Nesta watches the shadows with interest.
“Do they always sing like that?” she asks, wrinkling her nose.
“Gwyn sent a message. I think it’ll command Koschei.”
Nesta gives him a smirk, as if to say why are you worried about her?
Azriel doesn’t tell her about what he’s felt come down the bond, the fury that raged in him as he felt the blows on Gwyn’s body. He’d sent all his love, every song he knows, back down the link between them, received only silence in return. If Koschei is inside her mind, even if it is only a possibility, she’ll have to keep up her mental shields at every moment. Still, in that moment it had felt as if she’d winked out of existence, and it had been a fight to keep his fingers on his pen, to keep working out their new plan.
When they reach the lake, they keep their altitude. Rhys has glamoured them to be invisible, a complicated series of charms that should be impenetrable even to a death-lord, but they don’t risk detection, aside from a scattering of descending shadows.
From above, falling as they’ve been trained to do over centuries, the shadows look like tiny storms, a knot of cloud cover.
Meanwhile, Azriel and Cassian split up, crossing over the lake and the forest, searching for signs of movement. Everything is still and silent. There is not even a breeze to shift the branches, and there is no trace of Gwyn’s copper hair.
Though Azriel had known it was likely he would get no glimpse of her, that it’s better that Koschei keep her hidden, her absence is another blow. Still, he scans the forest, memorizes the locations of the trees, the spaces between them. It will be difficult to maneuver with his wings, but he can manage it. His shadows, moving cautiously, return and whisper about the warm places where snow melts, strange cries nearly impossible to detect. Thirty-one such places, they tell him, one with Gwyn’s scent. Hers was the only hint of a smile they’d caught in the forest.
While Cassian and Nesta draw closer to the forest, searching for any trace of Koschei or Gwyn or the other captives, Azriel remains high above, following his shadows as they show him where each captive is held, laying out the dimensions of the invisible prison.
Finally, the shadow leads him to the place where Gwyn is held, at the center of this portion of the forest, like the center of some great wheel.
Though Azriel cannot see her, he tries to send an image of his view, the lake and the forest, through the bond. He’s no daemati but even so, he hopes she knows that she is not alone, that he is here, flying above her, working the mission.
Elain had said that Gwyn would call for him when she was ready, but he only feels tension in his limbs, a new sensation.
Through the trees, a mass of shadows rises, splitting between himself and Cassian.
Azriel winnows, hurtling through the darkness until he reaches his brother, Nesta in his arms, and then they disappear.
“What was that?” Nesta asks, when they’re over the sea, no shadows in sight but the ones that ring Azriel.
It’s Cassian who answers, his arms tight around Nesta.
“That was Koschei. He saw through the glamour.”
“Or he’s inside Gwyn’s mind,” Azriel says. “I reached out through the bond.”
Nesta and Cassian sigh almost in unison.
“You can think with your cock when Gwyn is safe, brother.” Azriel has rarely heard Cassian sound so grave. “Until then, she is only one of your spies.”
“What happened when Nesta was taken?” It’s a petty position but it’s still a comfort, to feel anything other than despair.
“We all know he almost sacrificed himself to pull me out of the Blood Rite,” Nesta says, irritated and proud in roughly equal measure. “It doesn’t matter. What did you find before you gave Gwyn your location?”
“I know where all the captives are being held. The shadows can find them. They showed me the layout of the prison.”
“Koschei might change it,” Cassian points out.
“But we know he can’t detect Rhys’ glamour or Azriel’s shadows,” Nesta says.
“And there’s another thing,” Azriel says, his mind still turning over the information he’s gathered, thinking of the shadows with Koschei’s voice. “I think Koschei has unbound himself from a physical form. What we saw is Koschei?”
“Why would he do that?” Cassian asks, the kind of question that Azriel used to think was his stupidity before he realized how much his brother helped him develop an idea. “We saw him in that form when he captured Eris. It’s probably a way for him to break the spells that bind him to the lake, Az.”
“But those shadows were perfectly capable of destroying us. There’s more to them than even my shadows.” He wishes Gwyn were here, in his arms, warm and safe and capable of picking up the snarled threads of his thoughts and smoothing them into a workable theory. “What if it makes it easier to unbind him from the lake? From this world, even? What if a body for Koschei is what Amren’s body used to be for her, a limited container? Only Koschei has found a way to break free of it.”
“How does that helps us?” Nesta asks. Her teeth chatter with either nerves or cold.
“The more we know about what he wants, how he’s trying to achieve it, the better chance we’ll have of succeeding. And if I’m right, then he’s close to being unbound. Beron might just need to give the binding spell a push before it snaps.”
“So when do we go back and make sure the death-god doesn’t unleash himself on all of us?”
“Elain said that Gwyn will call when she’s ready.”
“She’ll only have one chance.” Cassian looks out over the horizon as if Koschei’s shadows might appear at any time.
“I know,” Azriel says, holding out his hand to winnow them home.
When they arrive at the river estate to give their report, Rhys greets them with a grim look on his face.
“Beron and his courtiers have already left for the continent. Eris is with them. They will likely reach Koschei by tomorrow, at the rate they can winnow.”
The words land like a blow. If Beron and Eris are both present, Rhys and Feyre cannot be involved in the mission. There will be no glamour, no daemati magic, none of Feyre’s raw, kaleidoscopic power. And with such short notice, Azriel will not be able to mobilize his spies in time. He will only have himself, and Gwyn.
“I’ll come with you, brother,” Cassian says. Even if Cassian has always wanted to be on the other side of Eris with a sword in his hand, Azriel knows what it means, that he would risk the ensuing shitshow.
“I will as well,” Nesta says.
“And me,” Emerie says, standing across the room, snapping her wings so they stretch around her, an ominous halo. “She’s our sister.”
“You’ll need someone else who can winnow,” Lucien says, his eyes barely rising from the scroll in his hands. “I’ll assist you.”
“And I’ll come as well.” Mor’s voice is bright, and despite the fear, despite all these hours without sleep, the sound warms something inside Azriel.
“You’re the High Lord’s third,” he protests.
She snorts. “As if Amren would ever let me take the throne. I’m coming.”
They end up crowded in Gwyn’s apartment, piling books and weapons, refining their plan and waiting, ears at attention, for her call.
Gwyn is woken before dawn by magic that removes the dirt from her skin and strips away her armor, then covers her nakedness with a red gown that does not suit her, cut close to her body to inhibit her movement. A dress like a cage, with fabric so thin that the wind slices through it. When the sun rises, every line of her body will be visible.
Beron is coming, she realizes.
For some reason, good or evil, Koschei did not strip away her necklaces, and she fiddles with them, the rose and the jeweled braid, and lets herself think of the winter solstice, of being warm and held by Azriel, before she concentrates on her plans, what she knows and still needs.
She will need Azriel’s shadows to command Koschei and yet she waits. Because if the goal is destabilization of this alliance, then she will show the High Lord of Autumn, who somewhere, through the centuries, shares an ancestor with her, that he has made a deadly mistake, allying himself to a sorcerer who can be beaten by a siren and an Illyrian.
Because she thinks that Koschei is afraid. After Azriel sent his message down the mating bond, his shadows plunged her into darkness for hours, until only her training kept her still. She’d allowed herself to sob, to gasp, to relieve the pain just slightly, all to protect the ruse. If he is scared when he thinks that she is weak, if he torments her like this, then when she strikes with her full powers, perhaps he will not endure it.
Anyway she cannot think about becoming Koschei’s permanent captive. She refuses to resign herself to that fate. She is a Valkyrie and a Carynthian and a spy, so far away from the screaming girl of years ago, scared of the darkness, of her power.
But even while she steels herself against those memories, lashed by the cold wind of another gray dawn, something else occurs to Gwyn: even at her weakest moment, bound to that table, screaming and violated, her powers guttering inside her, even then, she was strong. She did not falter. She saved the temple children.
The mass of shadows swirls around her again, moving through her hair, a parody of a caress.
“Why do you women insist on hiding your glory?” Koschei asks in a croon.
“I don’t know,” Gwyn says, answering the question in a different way than he intends. Because she is thinking of her billowing robes, all those nights in the small cell of her dormitory, the nights she could not sleep for counting all her mistakes, her sins and failings.
“When you are mine, little siren, you will not hide. I will display you in all your radiance as we retake what is mine. First this world, and then all the others.”
She wants to ask, does Beron know you plan to unthrone him? Instead she tamps the question down inside her, the old habit with her power. Probably Beron suspects the dangers of the game he’s playing.
She makes her voice as sweet and pliant as she can as she says, “Tell me about the world you came from.”
The silence is too thick, the shadows moving closer to her. They seem to suck all the sustenance from the air, but perhaps that is an aftereffect of the death-god’s grasping magic. She pulls her own power in towards her, making it small inside her body, even as she makes her smile more inviting.
“Why do you want to know?”
“I’m curious.” She pretends she is with Azriel, summons a teasing smile, letting her awareness move to her necklaces, their light weight a reassurance. “I thought after being away from it for so long, you would want to go back.”
The shadows consider her, shooting up into the air so that she has to crane her neck to meet the place she thinks his eyes would be.
“The only thing that mattered in the place from where I came was power. My father ruled over that world, but we were a large family, too large for there to be much hope that I’d inherit. It is hard to believe now, but I was one of the weaker siblings in that place. They did not see what I could become. One day, I found an open place between the worlds, a door to all I desired, and I entered this place. You should have seen the kingdom I built, little siren. It would make your paltry High Lord seem like a toddling child. I ruled for centuries and none could challenge me. And soon it will be so again.”
Of course, Koschei skips over the rest of the history, Gwyn thinks, trying to look suitably awed. He does not mention the other kingdoms that existed in this world at the time of his rule, which will outlast him in the histories for their poetry and art and music, the ideas which conquering and bloodshed cannot wash away. And Koschei does not mention Marija Morevna, who bound him to this lake.
“You see,” Koschei is saying, having believed the expression on her face, “all this time I have been building an engine with my captives. I have been selective in my choosing, letting those go free who do not complement this greater purpose. They are my eyes and ears in the world. Like you, little spy. Were it not for your other talents, I would have made you one of them. I would have had such fun watching you turn your High Lord’s Court of Dreams into a waking nightmare.”
“What purpose do you have for me instead?” It is an effort to make herself sound eager when her stomach is full of bile, when the wind cuts through the diaphanous fabric of her red gown, when all she wants to do is look for Azriel’s shadows and tell them to bring him quickly. Somehow, though, her training holds, and she forces a yearning smile on her face, a blush on her cheeks.
“You will command the souls of my great machine, until there is no doubt in this world or any other about who is most powerful.”
Her smile falters, her response stilled to silence, and there is a burning inside her mind as the shadows roil. There are no thoughts inside her mind, only pain.
“Show a little excitement, little spy. Haven’t you always been eager to do a great work?”
Her eyes blur with tears, and the most Gwyn can summon is a grimace that bears her teeth, but the pain in her mind subsides, her thoughts returning in a rush.
“When you are mine,” Koschei says, “you will never want to leave. And you will be mine soon.”
It is difficult not to think of Azriel, but somehow Gwyn manages to keep her eyes on the shadows, to keep nodding until Koschei seems to believe her, the resonance of his magic malevolent even as it stills around her in a dark shroud.
All the while, slowly and quietly, her mind works.
The night passes, and the morning. They sleep in shifts, curled on Gwyn’s couch and on the floor, while Azriel paces. Cassian keeps Nesta and Emerie from trying to calm him, and eventually they only offer him water as he paces around the apartment, waiting for Gwyn’s call.
He sends one shadow to the lake and then another, and they come back in the late morning with a report on the new locations of the captives. They do not say anything about Gwyn except that she is still alive, and he tries not to think about why they do not say more. But they sing the ugly melody she sent, and then another, dark and aching, and he wonders why Gwyn is sending the countermelody. If perhaps Koschei has caught her, if this is a kind of trap.
He sends the shadows back to the lake, to stand guard, and this time they do not return before there is a pull at his ribs, sharp and urgent.
“We need to go,” he says, and they all spring towards him. Mor and Lucien have been briefed on the location, Rhys slipping it into their minds as one last secret gift, and they swiftly disappear with Emerie and Nesta, the latter with a smile that glitters almost as brightly as her sword despite the grim focus in her eyes. Finally, she sees to be saying.
Azriel grabs Cassian and then they are high over the lake, the air thin and the sunlight blinding against the clouds.
“Ready, brother?” he asks, scanning the landscape below, the small cluster of bodies around the lake, the spot of red like fresh blood. Surrounded by a roiling mass of shadows.
Cassian only grins and reaches for his sword as he says, “Always.”
They tuck their wings in and dive through the air.
He does not see any movement in the forest and hopes it is whatever magic Koschei has worked on the captives, then turns back to the lake as Gwyn’s pale face appears, the fear in it.
He reminds himself that Vassa had told her to seem weak, and still he does not think that terror is completely manufactured, not when he sees the onyx box, feels the magic pouring from it, the grasping absence, the seeking magic. Whatever Merrill’s box contained, whatever bound her soul there, Koschei had not expended such magic.
“Beron’s brought all his fucking sons,” Cassian mutters, just loud enough to be heard over the roaring of the wind, and Azriel wrenches his thoughts from Gwyn and Koschei to survey the males who surround them, all dressed in the color and fashion of the Autumn Court, the overwrought elegance. Each glitters with a dozen visible weapons, and each is redolent with magic, a roaring fire just barely contained by their wills.
He and Cassian can barely secure their shields before the first blasts arrive.
Cassian banks wide, trying to pull their fire as he drops the shield just long enough to blast Eris’ brothers, the other members of the court.
Too quickly, they are shielded by Beron’s own fire, an impenetrable wall that surrounds them on all sides. Even his shadows cannot squeeze their way through.
Azriel concentrates his power and blasts a hole through, drops through the gap.
“I was waiting for you, shadowsinger,” Koschei’s voice croons, and then he is surrounded by shadows, trapped by the darkness, and knocked to the ground. The air is blistering, the snow bubbling and hissing below him, burning through his leathers.
Gwyn’s voice rises and is silenced before the first note of her melody achieves resonance.
“You thought I would make it easy for you, little siren? You think I haven’t watched your bat friends scouting out my parcel of this world?”
Azriel’s killing magic rises, but it gutters against Koschei’s binding. He cannot see, can hardly sense anything with the heat and the pain and his fear, and he cannot risk destroying Gwyn, but he thinks of that ugly melody that she kept sending with his shadows, the one that would not be performed by any singer in this world.
And because he cannot raise his sword to protect her, because he is bound by a magic he cannot overcome despite all of his training, Azriel opens his mouth and starts singing the melody, following the memory she cemented with each report, hoping that it will do something.
At first, all he hears are the sneers of the Autumn Court, the moaning of the few Cassian managed to blast, and beyond them there’s the movement of the onyx box, and Koschei’s power, grasping and pulling, burrowing its way inside his mind, pain expanding with every beat of Azriel’s heart, until he swears it is all he can see, and hear, and taste, more present than the death-god’s binding shadows.
Then, he feels the slightest tug of Gwyn’s power, a link between them.
Despite the pain, he keeps singing, even as the death-lord’s shadows fill his mouth, as Koschei’s magic fills his mind, savoring the feeling of Gwyn’s power increasing, bit by bit, his nightingale reclaiming all that she is owed.
He thinks, though he should know better, that perhaps this will work. That through the mating bond, he can sing the melody of command, that his love alone will bypass Koschei’s manifold shields, that her power will spring forth and command them all free, lead them all into a better world.
Then the death-god’s power fills his mind completely, and Azriel’s lungs empty without his having commanded them to exhale. He scrabbles inside his mind but it’s like scrabbling against the walls of that cellar of his childhood, his fingertips shredding against nothing but hard rock wall.
The world is nothing but molten darkness and the burning of his lungs and the grip of the death-god’s power.
And he thinks, falling into that burning void, that he cannot die like this, not knowing if Gwyn survived. That he would give anything to know that she made it out unharmed.
Then in the midst of the darkness, there is a note that blasts through him, a fundamental tone of such richness and power that it overwhelms everything else. Azriel is held within the grip of Gwyn’s power, and there is no pain inside his mind, only trust and certainty.
His lungs fill.
The shadows fall away.
She stands before him, her face radiant, her eyes sparkling teal, her hair blazing nearly the same color as the fiery shield that falls away on her command.
The shadows of the death-god still as they behold her. As if Koschei knows that at this moment, Gwyn could utterly destroy him.
Then, in spite of her command, the primacy of her power, those same shadows twine around her neck, overlaying her necklaces.
Azriel reaches out with a bolt of his power and knocks them away, again and again, his killing power pulling back before it reaches Gwyn’s moonglow skin.
The necklaces shatter, the gold and jewels and glass turned to ash, but Gwyn’s power pours forth, and Koschei’s shadows fall away. Now, the only shadows that ring her are Azriel’s own, the swirling echoes of her resonance.
Now Gwyn begins another song, a melody he’s never heard, regal and yearning. From the trees, from the sky, there arises the melody he’d sung only moments ago, smothered in shadows and writhing in the boiling mud, a chorus of female voices who do not falter on a single note of the complicated, ugly melody. And around her, Azriel’s shadows let forth their own strand of song, the countermelody they’d brought him earlier.
She’s commanding Koschei alone, her power rising on a fierce tide toward the mass of shadows she’s only just managed to throw back.
Azriel raises a shield just in time to block the bolt of fire hurled toward her, whirls in time to see the anger on Beron’s face, to see the High Lord raise his hand toward Azriel.
He dodges, strengthening the magic of the shield so that it does not shatter against Beron’s onslaught, but he hears the crackle of fire, feels it skim the talon on the tip of his wing, an agony that he ignores as he deflects the magic, builds the shield as Gwyn sings and the shadows that are Koschei writhe and begin to scream.
Then there is the crackle of fire at Azriel’s back, a wall of flame kissed with white light like the center of the sun, and Lucien Vanserra appears at his side, two women holding onyx boxes held in his arms, still singing the countermelody in time with Gwyn.
“I thought you might need assistance,” Lucien says with a smirk as he raises his shield higher. Azriel has never thought that Lucien was particularly powerful, but his fire is more than sufficient to hold Beron back, the shield rising as high as the treetops.
Azriel lowers his own shield of blue light as he runs toward Gwyn, ready to defend her as her melody crescendos into its climax, and as he raises his sword towards the shadows, ready to charge, the song becomes resonance, the sound of pure power.
“You will let your captives go. Free the beings you hold in this forest, and the ones you hold captive all over this world,” she says, her voice shaking the earth beneath their feet, driving ripples through the frigid water of the lake. “You will never again seek them. You will never again torment them. You will let them be free as long as they live, as long as you live, as long as this world endures.”
She pauses for breath, and Azriel realizes that he is waiting for Koschei to respond, but the shadows are silent, undulating around some central point, expanding and contracting, but without the anger and turmoil he’d seen in them before, their power dwarfed by the onslaught Gwyn commands. They look almost like his own shadows when they wait for his instruction.
“You will dismantle your engine of souls,” Gwyn says, her voice overwhelming every other sound, her magic swelling still higher, with such force that Azriel isn’t sure how she still stands. “You will stay in this world, at this lake. You will not harm us when I let go of this magic.”
Her mouth opens, her lips form around a syllable, but then she sighs. Gwyn swallows her next words.
In the resonance, while the death-lord waits in expectation for another command, Azriel unleashes his power on the open onyx box, shatters it in an explosion of blue light. Let Gwyn never again be taken captive, he thinks, hoping it’s a promise they can keep together, risking a glance away from Koschei and at her, in time to see the moment she drops the magic, the instant the radiance dulls on her pale cheeks.
The resonance falls into silence.
For a moment, it looks as if Gwyn will take flight, and then, before she can collapse into the snow, Azriel scoops her into his arms, holds her tight against him while he forms a shield against the shadows that make Koschei, which writhe in the absence of Gwyn’s magic.
He expects an attack, prepares to shout and warn Lucien, but instead the shadows unfurl to reveal a white-haired male, his lips pulled back over pointed teeth, his overlarge eyes so dark that no light escapes them. Though he’s taller than Azriel, taller than any High Fae male, the power around him is diminished, grasping at the edge of Azriel’s shield. As if it feels its sudden weakness and seeks new strength.
Azriel does not take his eyes off Koschei as he addresses Lucien.
“Is everyone else out?”
“They should be,” the male says, “I pulled ten out already.”
Later, he will learn how Mor and Lucien determined who to winnow, who could sing the melody. He will meet every one of the captives, learn their names and apologize for every day they were held by the lake.
But now, he only nods at Lucien and launches himself into the sky, trailing his shield behind him, feeling the strain of maintaining it after all those days sending his shadows after Gwyn. He grits his teeth and focuses his power, rests his fingers over Gwyn’s throat until he knows she’s breathing, that her heart still beats, and then circles the forest, trying to determine whether any captives remain. He will winnow any of the remaining women, who in his mind look like Gwyn, like his mother, strong and beautiful and trying to rid themselves of the horrors that still linger in their minds.
The forest is empty and his shadows return to him with the same report, but still Azriel circles the trees until the shadows have covered each inch of the forest, cradling Gwyn in his arms and darting his eyes between her face and the forest and the Autumn Court delegation that seems dangerously torn between dejection and rage.
Finally, Mor appears in the forest below, and there is a smile on her face that makes her wave of dismissal redundant. Each of the thirty women has been taken to safety.
He spears himself upward, and then winnows to the sky above the House of Wind, Gwyn still and swooning in his arms, until, at the impact of his landing in the training ring, her eyelids flutter, and he thanks the Mother as he cradles Gwyn’s head in his hand, drawing her cold cheek to his racing heart.
“Are they free?” she asks, already sitting up against his thighs despite the waver in her voice, as if she’s ready to summon whatever strength is left in her and run until each captive woman is out of the woods, out of Koschei’s clutches.
“Mor and Lucien winnowed everyone out,” he says, unable to keep himself from kissing her, even as he carries her down the stairs and inside the House. “I will go back and find them and bring them here to you, but I couldn’t leave you there any longer, nightingale.”
The smile on her face is pure joy and contentment and exhaustion, so bright that it almost banishes the violet from the new hollows in her face.
When he opens the door to the House, there are dozens of voices he doesn’t recognize, speaking in accents Azriel has only heard on his farthest missions.
One tall female, emaciated and shaking but whose eyes gleam fiercely, sparkling only a little less than her golden skin, strides to Gwyn and takes her dangling hand.
“You were the one who remembered us?” she asks, while the rest of the room goes silent.
“I should have come sooner,” Gwyn says, “I’m sorry.”
The female shakes her head. “I waited for centuries in those fucking woods. Nobody came for us. Not until you did, siren.”
Gwyn stills in his arms. Azriel isn’t sure whether it’s exhaustion or fear or shame that keeps her silent.
Then she says, “My name is Gwyn. And you saved yourselves. That magical engine Koschei built -- it connected us all. Wove our power together into those commands. You’re the reason that he isn’t using our powers to escape that lake.”
“I’m Tatiana,” the other female says, her lips turning upward.
Azriel can feel Gwyn straining even to lift her hand, but he cannot pull her away from this moment, as Tatiana pulls Gwyn’s hand toward her and raises it to her lips in a courtly kiss.
The other women have clustered behind her, their own eyes shining.
But it is Gwyn who is saying, her voice weak and thick with tears, thank you, thank you, thank you.
Notes: For someone who loves setting up final battle scenes, I always get so nervous about writing them! (If you regularly read these notes, I feel like my nerves are a theme?) Making sure all the bodies are in the right places, that the action is convincingly surprising, that all the magic follows the rules I've previously set up, all of that tends to have me gnashing my teeth and trying to see if I can draft with my hands over my eyes. So hopefully this worked for you, because this kind of scene is something I'm very much still working to improve in my own writing.
Now that the plot is winding down, though, there's time for some fluff and resolutions, and I can't wait to share that with you!
For more theories, thoughts, and occasional sneak peeks, follow me on Instagram at house.of.hurricane or TikTok at houseofhurricane.
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I NEED a scene in the next book where Az is encompassed within his shadows to the point where he's more shadow than Illyrian.
Then Gwyn walks in and his shadows start dancing.
And the IC is like, "...What just happened?"
hello! no rush or need to do this if it doesn’t inspire you, it was just a thought i had for a azriel x fem!reader and i wanted to share. :)
so i was thinking that something goes wrong on a mission and azriel & the readers hands are like handcuffed together with magic? (i’m not sure if i’m explaining well) and at the time they aren’t very fond of each other but they’re obviously forced to spend time together. so when amren is trying to figure out how to get them off they both get frustrated and it ends in smut while they’re still ‘handcuffed’?
just a thought i had. have a great day!
I absolutely LOVED this request and was so excited to write it. It turned out way longer than I intended, oops. I hope you like it. And if you just want to read the smut without everything else, scroll through most of it till you find a line with several *. Things get heated around there.
Azriel x Fem!reader
Word Count: 5766
Warnings: smut, obviously(at the end), biting, rough sex, bondage, hints of sad Azriel?
Sat around the oval table, I crossed my arms over my chest. By the way, Rhysand was explaining this upcoming mission. I knew exactly what he was going to ask. The two best people for the job are me and Azriel. It’s not that I dislike Azriel; it’s that he dislikes me.
In all my years with the inner circle, working under the High Lord and Lady, he’s never offered a kind word or even a hello. More than not, he dismisses my ideas in meetings and shoots me looks I can’t quite decipher.
“Absolutely not,” he says in a low steady voice, but I can detect the anger behind it, “I’m not taking her on the mission. I can go by myself.”
Rhys has just explained his plan and considering Azriel’s outburst, I decided not to say anything.
“You could use her talents, Az,” Feyre chimes in, “unless you’ve suddenly learned how to speak their native tongue?”
“And are willing to dress up as a female and seduce the prince.” Cassian helpfully chimes in with a smirk.
Azriel shoots them both death glares before turning the look to me. I think for a second that he might kill me just so that he doesn’t have to bring me along, but instead, he just stands and walks to the door.
“You better be ready by dawn; that’s when we leave,” he growls over my shoulder before finishing his route to the door and storming out. I can still feel his hot breath on my neck; it sends shivers down my spine.
“That went better than I thought it would,” Rhys sighs, relaxing into his chair.
“He hardly ever acts so dramatic,” Cassian says, “what is it about you, Y/N, that makes him act out?”
Everyone’s attention suddenly turns to me-it’s unnerving. “Uhhh, I don’t know,” I offer helpfully with a shrug.
Their attention quickly fades and turns to less important matters, allowing me to slip out undetected and prepare for the mission to come.
I wake an hour before dawn to clean up and finish packing; knowing I may not be able to shower for a while has me scrubbing extra clean. I leave my room a quarter before dawn, my pack slung over my shoulder, and walk toward the dining room, excited for the mission-even if it’s with Azriel.
“You’re late,” Azriel growls from a corner near the balcony when I arrive five minutes later.
“No- no, I’m not,” I say nervously as he steps out from the wall and turns to the open doors.
“Let’s go,” he barks-an order.
I swallow back the lump in my throat and follow him onto the balcony. I allow him to stiffly pick me up and shoot into the air. Usually, I don’t mind silence, but with him holding me so close, I can’t help but stiffen and feel uncomfortable.
We don’t land for hours, though. We’re barely inside the night court now and land at a pub for lunch, which is also uncomfortable until we start talking about the mission. I don’t bother offering many ideas, knowing if I do it’ll just make him angrier. Even when I tried tweaking one small part of it, he huffed in frustration and glared at me. I held my ground, though, and he reluctantly agreed to add my idea.
In the afternoon, we make it to the coast and set up a small camp for a short break.
“Why’d we have to fly all the way here?” I ask.
“Because I have to winnow us across the ocean. I need to preserve my power.”
“I can winnow,” he freezes at that. Maybe he hadn’t thought of that, I wonder giddily.
But a second later, he’s in motion again, “have you ever been to Vallahan?”
“I-” I cut myself off, “no,” I finish, lowering my head and continuing my job of collecting water.
The mission continues smoothly after that. We get to Vallahan and camp on the outskirts, in the woods, for a couple of weeks. I mostly just wait as Azriel collects information. It’s not time for my job yet. When the time finally does come, though, I can’t help but smile. Azriel and I formulate our plan: brother and sister, come from our small village for the festival and to visit the king.
It doesn’t take long to infiltrate the city and get settled into an inn. I make friends with as many people as possible, attempting to gain their trust, but Azriel is quick to pull me back to him. He scowls at practically everyone, which unnerves me. He could blow our mission if anyone gets suspicious.
“What are you doing?” he growls when we get to our room the first night.
“What are you doing?” I snap back, “we need these people to like us if this plan is going to play out.”
He looks away from me. He’s angry, I can tell, but when he turns back to the door to unlock it, it’s clear he agrees. The door swings open, and I storm in to drop my pack but freeze when I only see one bed.
Azriel freezes next to me, the door shut at our backs. “I requested two beds,” he says, simply, “The male said this was their last room available, though.”
I huff a breath but shrug, pretending not to care as I sit on the bed, “you can sleep on the floor then,” I try to offer, but he just laughs darkly.
“Like hell, I’m sleeping on the floor, sweetheart. If you’ve got a problem sleeping next to me, sleep on the floor yourself,” he says, plopping down on the bed next to me.
We sleep next to one another for only one night before I decide to sleep on the floor. Azriel takes up so much of the small bed that I rolled out in the middle of the night and woke to the feeling of falling. I could have sworn I heard him chuckling too, but I just grabbed my pillow and curled up on the wooden floor.
Other than that, though, we continue to successfully gather the information we need. Whenever we encounter someone that does not speak our tongue, I do the talking. It is absolutely wonderful to see Azriel so helpless, but it only makes him angry at me later.
It’s only a week before we get invited to the large party at the castle and formulate the rest of our plan to successfully steal the king’s staph-which Azriel refuses to tell me the use of.
And when we conduct the plan and walk into the stone castle, everything is still going more than smoothly. It was when I was running through the woods in a tattered ball gown and heels that things went especially wrong.
Only ten minutes prior everything was fine, but then as Azriel and I were sneaking away from the palace-out a servant’s door- we were caught red handed. It didn’t take more than two minutes for the warning bells to sound, but Azriel and I were already in the forest. We didn’t need these people’s trust anymore anyways. We just needed to get away, so it wasn’t that bad. What ruined the mission, though, is when a witch stepped into our path.
I know nothing of witches, and therefore, nothing of how it happened, but one second I was running with Azriel by my side, and the next, we were stopped before a female, and my right wrist was burning. Azriel dropped the staph from his left hand, and before the witch could grab it for herself, I caught the staph and swung with my left hand, smacking her in the face with it.
I gripped the item as tightly as possible in my hand and ran with Azriel at my side still. As soon as we reached the edge of the forest, though, he grabbed my wrist and winnowed us away.
When we land in the Night Court we’re on a dark beach attached to the east coast. Here we are practically at the border to the Day Court, and just a hundred yards south, I can see where the black sand turns white.
It’s night here too, but earlier, and the stars are brighter. Besides me, in the sand, Azriel pants furiously. His breaths are shallow, and I only notice a few fragments of sentences ‘my hands’ ‘…fire’ ‘everything burns…’
I realize suddenly that my right hand is still burning, and I’m unsure why. It must have been the sorceress from the woods. Did he feel it too? Why is Azriel so frantic?
“Azriel, it’s okay.” I try to comfort and lift my right hand, but it feels heavier. Then I hear Azriel gasp, and his gaze locks on my wrist. His wrist. Bound together by a vicious glowing red rope. I tug at my wrist and try to pull it from the magical bind, but I am stuck. Stuck to Azriel.
I look up at Azriel to see what we should make of this situation, but he is just staring at his hands. I peer at his face, and for a second, I think I see tears in his eyes, but then he whips his head to the side, and I can only see the tousled mess of dark hair.
“I’ve sent word to Rhys of our predicament. I can’t winnow anymore, and I think I injured my wing. You shouldn’t winnow either since you’ve used so much magic already, so someone will come to get us.
Less than five minutes later, Mor appears on the beach. I don’t notice her at first because she’s several paces behind us, but she quickly winnows a second time and lands in front of us.
“Hello,” she says with a bright grin. She runs her gaze over both of us-assessing for injuries but finds nothing and halts when she sees our bound wrist. The glow of the rope is dimmer now but still red. She kneels beside us and attempts to grab our hands to see it, but Azriel finally snaps.
“Will you just take us home, Mor. Your curiosity isn’t doing anyone any good.”
Mor flinches back at his furious tone and looks hurt but quickly replaces the expression with another smile. She grabs each of us by our unbound hands and quickly winnows away.
We land again, but this time on a hard surface: the marble floor of the river house. Rhys and Cassian are already waiting on the floor, and I notice both of their faces turned to Azriel, and somehow they grow more worried. Is something wrong?
Feyre and Amren walk through the door, and you look over Azriel at them, but then your view is blocked by Cassian kneeling before Azriel. The first male whispers something into the latter’s ear, but you can’t hear it, even at my proximity.
Cassian runs a soothing hand down Azriel’s back and continues whispering something to him. I can’t help but notice the way Azriel relaxes. I hadn’t even realized how tense he had become. Worry floods through me suddenly, but when Azriel turns to meet my eyes with a glare, and I realize I have been staring, worry is replaced by shame, and my cheeks heat with a blush.
A moment later, Amren is kneeling before our bound hands, analyzing the magic.
“Can you undo it?” Rhys’ deep voice sounds from over her shoulder.
“I’ll need to do a bit more research, but I should be able to fix it. Feyre, I’ll need your help too; the magic you inherited from Helion will be a great help,” Amren replies as she raises to face the High Lord and Lady.
“Can’t we just ask Helion to fix it himself?” I raise my pleading face to them, dreading having to be attached to this male and his glares any longer.
The look Rhys gives me is a sad one: as if he knows exactly what I’m thinking and feels bad. “I’ve asked Helion for enough recently. If we can prevent it, I wouldn’t like to request anything else. Or give anyone reason to believe we were in Valehann and are now vulnerable.”
I nod, understanding, and make to stand, but my hand touches Azriel’s, and he rips it toward him, knocking me down and pulling me toward him in the process.
He attempts to shove me away, but it’s difficult when we are bound so closely, so various body parts start to hurt. My head hurts from knocking it against the ground, and my shoulder aches from Azriel pulling me so suddenly toward him. The pain there only gets worse when Azriel suddenly rises, and I’m left in a painful position on the floor.
“Ow,” I whimper, tears pricking my eyes while I struggle to stand.
“Azriel.” Feyres’s voice cuts through the room like ice. I finish standing and look up suddenly to see everyone’s pitying and cringed looks on us. Cassian starts saying something to Azriel, attempting to calm him. He doesn’t stay to listen, though, and starts climbing the stairs.
He moves quickly, but slow enough that he is not entirely dragging me with him. I can only assume it is to barely evade Feyre scolding him again. Which makes me smile widely; Feyre scolding this male like a child makes me want to giggle. And I do. We’re in his bedroom now, and he’s pacing a few feet while I am practically forced to walk in circles around himbecasue of our bound hands.
“What are you laughing at?” Azriel’s tone is dangerous enough to stop my laugh immediately.
“I just had a funny thought, is all,” I explain. “Will you stop pacing? My wrist is beginning to hurt, and I wish to sit.”
Azriel ceases his pacing, so I walk to his bed placed in the middle of the wall. He does not sit beside me but rather remains standing at the end of the bed. So I look around the room and try to figure out what he likes. The walls are dark and so is all the furniture. Almost everything is black or blue, the only other hint of color coming from the many bookshelves lining the walls and the few paintings-obviously done by the High Lady herself.
“Stop that,” Azriel’s gruff voice cuts through my thoughts.
“What?” I ask, brow furrowed in confusion.
“Analyzing me with your devious little brain. Stop.” He says with a new glare, so I look at my hands instead, not wanting to cause trouble.
I think instead about why he is so upset, but come up with nothing. Then a moment later, Madja knocks gently on the door and walks in. The healer only spends a short time in the room: quickly wrapping Azriel’s wing and looking over my now bruised shoulder. Azriel pulled one of my muscles.
After another look over Madja packs her things and prepares to leave, but not before offering Azriel a small scowl. “You need to be gentler with her, that shoulder of hers shouldn’t be strained anymore. And I doubt I need to tell you to keep off the wing?” She phrases the last part as a question but they both know the answer so she leaves.
“I’m tired…” I say, drawing his stoney expression to me, “can we just sleep?”
His expression changes at that. He looks upset, distressed, then nervous, and suddenly his expression is stone again and he’s scowling. “You’re a mess. We both are. We are not going to make my sheets reek of this filth.”
I realize suddenly he’s implying a bath, and my eyes widen with shock as he starts moving toward the bathing chamber.
“No,” I say sternly, stopping him in his tracks. “I am not-I’m not going to… with you.”
His brow furrows. “I wasn’t implying we get in the tub together.”
“Well, what do you suggest we do?”
“One of us will bathe at a time while the other waits at the edge of the tub.” He says it like it’s obvious, but I’m still uncomfortable. Then, we are in the small room, and Azriel is cutting his shirt sleeve so he can remove it from the arm bound to mine.
“Do you wish to go first, or shall I?” he asks the question plainly, peeling the mud-caked shirt from his hard abdomen.
“No. No,” I say roughly, turning my gaze to the tiled floor. “I am not bathing in front of you.”
“It’s nothing I haven’t seen before,” he says, leaning to turn the water on.
“Excuse me?” I practically shout and look up as he starts removing his belt.
“I mean- not you specifically. I’ve seen plenty of female bodies. It’s not that big of a deal.”
I fight back the urge to yell at him and say that it is a big deal- to me. Instead, I turn away from him as much as I can and attempt to hold back the frustrated tears while he attempts to pull his pants down with only one hand.
Eventually, the task becomes too difficult, and Azriel pulls our bound hands to his hips to assist himself. I squeak as my knuckles graze the leather covering his body and clench my hand into a fist, angling it closer to myself.
I can feel him watching me but ignore it as best I can while Azriel pulls his pants down and climbs into the large tub. I move to sit on the tub, our arms resting on the edge, and turn my head to look away from the bubbling water. It proves a more difficult task than I wish it were. My curiosity nearly gets the best of me multiple times, but I refuse to look at Azriel’s body. It would only make things worse.
Azriel finishes washing quickly, and I follow suit once he’s wrapped in a towel and the tub is filled with clean water. I refuse to take too long and keep my eyes glued to Azriel's back as he stares at the wall.
When we finally step out of the bathroom, both wrapped up in fluffy towels, Azriel takes no time to drop his towel. Unprepared, I quickly turn away but not before glimpsing his butt. It was kind of adorable, honestly.
My shoulder hurts from the quick move, and I take a shaky breath in, but I can’t escape Azriel. He turns toward me in nothing but underwear and gently grabs my shoulder.
“You need to be more careful,” he murmurs, then quickly drops my arm and looks down at me covered in the towel.
Self-conscious, I raise my left arm to hold my towel up more and turn toward the door, tugging Azriel with me.
“Where are we going?”
“To my room. So I can get some pajamas.”
“Right,” is all he says, still not looking me in the eyes.
We arrive in my bedroom, and I quickly grab clothes from the drawers and plop down on the edge of my bed to attempt putting them on. Making Azriel turn away, I struggle for a minute to pull on underwear and shorts. Then, with a t-shirt in hand, I sit still and try to figure out how to put it on.
“Unless you cut a sleeve, you’re not going to get into that shirt,” Azriel's voice, dark and smooth, draws me back to the room.
I grumble something in return and go back to my dresser and pull out a lacey nightgown instead. It’s the only comfortable pajamas I own that’s also strapless. So, quickly, I take off the shorts and shimmy into the silky shift that clings to curves I never wanted Azriel to see.
“Okay,” I say, my voice coming out squeakily as I stand and move toward the door. The sooner we get back to Azriel’s room and under the covers, the sooner I can start pretending he never saw me in this dress. What I didn’t realize, however, is moving in front of Az gives him a view of my barely covered ass.
A choking sound leaves his mouth, and when I turn back, Azriel is staring at the ceiling, muttering something under his breath that even I can’t hear. So I start walking instead, and we leave my room behind.
Our rooms just happen to be across the house from one another, so it’s a bit of a walk, and when we pass the stairs a shout comes from below.
“Damn Az, nice outfit, Brother.” Cassian.
Azriel just growls in response, and I keep walking and don’t stop when I get to Azriel’s room. I climb onto the right side of his bed and lay down on my back under the covers so that he can lay to my right.
I’m staring at the ceiling, unsuccessfully pretending Azriel isn’t there. “Um…” his voice comes hesitantly. He’s kneeling on the bed, not yet laying down. “I don’t mean to disturb you, but can we switch?”
“What?” I grumble, confused.
“My wings…” he trails off, “I like to sleep on my stomach because of the wings. It’s more comfortable. So…”
He still isn’t looking at me, and I can’t figure out why so I stop my scowl pretty quick and just move over to the other side of the bed and turn onto my front. Azriel crawls into bed right where I was and turns his head away from me. So I do the same. We face away from one another, our bound hands on the mattress between us.
The next day passes in a blur. We spend most of it trying to work side by side, but it’s a struggle since I can’t exactly write with his left hand tied to me.
Feyre and Amren haven’t made any progress on the spell to undo the binding, and things with Azriel are only getting tenser. When we’re alone again the next night and have just slipped into our pajamas, I move toward the bathroom. I grab the brush I had left there this morning and start coming through my hair. I can feel Azriel watching but don’t say anything. Then, suddenly, he whips his head away.
“Fuck,” I can just barely hear him mumble under his breath.
“What?” I question.
“Nothing,” he growls, pulling us to the bed. After five minutes of staring at the back of his head, though, I’ve had enough.
“Why do you hate me?” I say it loud enough for him to hear, but he doesn’t respond. That only makes me angrier. “Hey! I asked you a question.” I’m almost yelling now, and I take our bound hands and hit him in the head.
“Don’t hit me,” he growls, whipping his head back to return my glare.
“I didn’t. You hit yourself.” His eyes glow with fury at my response.
“Really? You’re going to act like a child?” is his reply, edged with anger.
“You’re the one that ignored my question. Why do you hate me so much?”
He stares at me for a moment, stoney expression completely emotionless. And it remains that way while he says, “I don’t,” and lays back down, looking away from me.
“What?” I raise my voice slightly.
“Will you be quiet? There is no reason to shout; I can hear you perfectly well without it,” he says, turning back onto his side to face me.
“Well, then stop ignoring me. And don’t lie.”
“I wasn’t lying. I don’t hate you.”
“Well, you certainly like to act like it.”
“No, I don’t.”
“Yes, you do. You’re upset right now.”
“You’re interrupting my rest.” That only fuels my anger, and I turn onto my side, lifting onto my forearm to face him better.
“You got upset in the bathroom. Why?”
“No. I didn’t.”
“Stop with all the denying. Why are you upset?” I growl.
“I’m not,” he growls right back.
“You keep lying! It’s pissing me off!” I’m nearly shouting again and shove him with our bound hands.
In only a second, I’m flipped onto my back, and my hand is being held above my head. “I told you to stop touching me,” he growls, but I’m too focused on what’s pressing into my thigh to respond.
Realization hits the both of us at the same moment; my eyes widen, and my mouth gapes as Azriel pulls himself up to his knees.
“You’re- Why are you hard?” I whisper, shout as if someone is listening.
“I can’t always control it,” he whispers back, turning his face away from me, his cheeks reddening.
“500 years, and you haven't figured out how to control your own dick?”
His face goes red with embarrassment at my words, “shut up!” he grumbles quietly.
“No. Explain yourself.”
“Explain myself?” he’s shouting, now, “I think this is enough explanation.” He looks down at me in my silky lace shift.
I blush darkly under his gaze. “So you can’t control yourself when there’s a girl in a nightgown in your bed?”
“Can’t control myself?” he growls, moving forward to lean over me again. “I haven’t touched you. Do you have any idea how much control that takes?” His eyes are dark now, and my tummy is doing flips at him being this close. Fuck!
“Azriel,” I murmur breathlessly, lifting my free hand slightly, but in a flash I can barely register, he moves my hand above my head to rest with the other. I try to pull it away, but his grip is firm.
“I am controlling myself! So why do you have to push me? Why do you have to tempt me? Touch me?” His words trail off, and he pushes closer to me, pressing his hips into mine. His bulge is even more obvious now.
“Azriel,” I murmur again, and this time he lifts his head to look into my eyes, blown wide with lust.
One second Azriel is above me, and the next: we’re connected, more than just at the wrist. His lips press to mine roughly, and his tongue dips into my mouth taking every ounce of control away.
I’ve never been kissed like this. Touched like this. Azriel’s free hand begins roaming my body. Over my hip and up to my breasts, he feels my hard nipples through the fabric before quickly pulling it down and pulling his mouth away from mine to latch onto one of my hard nipples.
With his left hand holding both of mine hostage above my head his right continued moving across my body and his mouth never left me for long. His lips moved from one breast to another, back to my mouth, then to my neck. My jaw. The valley between my breasts.
I arch against him, pleading silently with my body for more. Only barely obliging, he ruts his hips against mine and nips at my ear. He doesn't say anything, breathing heavily, and for a second I have a moment of clarity. Should we really be doing this, I think?
But then his teeth are gently biting my collarbone again, and his right hand is traveling past my hips. I gasp when he rubs me once through my panties and growls at the wetness pooled there. After that, he doesn’t waste any more time. Yanking his underwear down so that his cock has enough room to spring free, he moves his hand back to my panties and looping a finger into my panties right where they cover my clit, he lets a knuckle graze the bundle of sensitive nerves and pulls the fabric to the side, giving his cock enough room to nudge at my soaking folds.
He thrust into me slow and steady the first time, stretching me wide and seating himself comfortably to give me a chance to adjust. After I catch my breath, though, and motion to him to continue, he’s no longer gentle.
Pulling out to the tip, he thrusts back in roughly, sending the entire bed lurching forward slightly so that the headboard hits the wall. A loud gasp leads my mouth combined with a dark moan. Azriel continues brutally thrusting in, pulling out, and thrusting back in again. He hits the spot I need him to every time, and within a minute, I’m clenching around him and moaning with the need to cum.
He chuckles softly from above, drawing my gaze, and our eyes finally meet again. “Going to cum already?” he asks in that dark sultry voice of his, his lips nearly touching my own.
My only response is a moan, and with his next thrust, a scream erupts from my lips the same second the headboard slams back into the wall. I cum all over his cock, drenching him with my cream, but he’s not done yet. Not even close.
Flipping me over so that my left hand is trapped underneath me, Azriel gently pulls my bound hand to rest across my back, where he presses it firmly with his. His cock is back at my dripping pussy as soon as we’re settled, and he immediately starts nudging and rubbing his tip about and down the slit of me. When he roughly pushes his tip against my clit I can’t help but start shaking.
“Oh, do you like that, baby?” he purrs into my ear, continuing to nudge his cock to my clit. He rubs and thrusts along my folds, torturing my clit until I’m clenching around nothing, nearly about to cum. That’s when he pulls away.
I grumble at the lost friction but stop complaining when Azriel pulls back slightly, lowering his face to my ass, his left arm stretching to stay with mine against my lower back.
He lays down on the bed between my legs, and a second later, his nose is nudging my wetness. Then his tongue is darting out, and he’s collecting me on his tongue, licking up my cum and swallowing it. He presses his face closer until I’m pushed forward slightly. His face is buried in my pussy, and he just licks and sucks and bites, bringing me closer to an orgasm.
He doesn’t stop when my legs start shaking. Or when my hand starts clawing at his. Or when I start screaming and moaning. He just buries his face deeper and moves his tongue so expertly against my clit that I cum harder than I ever have before, squirting my release onto his face and panting into the pillow beneath me.
Azriel doesn’t come up for several more minutes, and I’d think he may have drowned if it weren’t for the feeling of his tongue lapping up my juices and depositing them into his mouth.
When he does rise from the sheets, it’s only barely. His face drags up my ass as he presses kisses and licks there, moving up ever so slowly. He begins sucking and kissing his way up my spine next, surely leaving bruises. When he reached my neck, he nudges my face to one side, and his cock nudges at my folds, seeking the hole it so desperately wanted to return to.
When his tip started pushing into me, he let his tongue lick one long lick along the bottom of my neck where it meets my shoulder. Then, without warning, his cock shoves into me to the hilt, and simultaneously Az bites down on the spot he liked. He bites hard enough to draw blood and make me groan from the little bit of pain.
He doesn’t release his mouth, his teeth stay buried in me, and his cock wastes no time in moving in and out, seeking endless pleasure. He drives in and in, pushing limits no one has pushed before and bringing me to pleasures I’ve never seen.
Again and again, in and out, and in seconds I’m releasing a screaming moan from my throat, my legs trembling and pushing together squeezing Azriel’s cock which stays buried in me, not moving as my pussy clenches it too.
Finally, his mouth releases my neck. And his tongue licks up the little bit of blood from his rough bite. Nothing but the sounds of our breath echo in the room, mine far more labored than Azriel’s. Then I realize he hasn’t cum yet.
“Azriel,” I say as he starts to pull out of my aching core, thinking he’s leaving. But then his hand tightens on my wrist, and his other pushes me back toward the bed as I had tried to sit up. In a quick motion, he begins thrusting in. He’s moving fast, almost too fast for me to notice as he doesn’t push in enough to hit that spot inside of me. Only grazing it.
I’m whimpering beneath him as he huffs and groans loudly, his pace beginning to falter. Then, pulling out to the tip, he shoves back in harder than before and hits my spot so hard I'm cumming again as he fills me with his own hot cream.
We stay like that, again, for many minutes before Azriel pulls out and sits up, gently flipping me back onto my back in the process. Moving as far from me as possible, he picks something up off the floor-some sort of fabric. I watch as he wipes himself off and then moves the fabric-his underwear- to my pussy and starts cleaning off the cum that's already spilling out.
A smirk crosses his face while he stares at me. “What?” I ask, confused by his expression while he looks at my core.
“Nothing,” he continues smirking and glances up at me, “I just like watching my cum spill out of you.”
My cheeks heat, turning a dark shade of red and I turn my head away, but a second later Azriel’s lips are there, pressing gentle kisses all over my face. He wraps his arms around me and lifts me up with him. I don’t notice where we’re going until I hear the water of the tub turn on in the dark room. A second later a small light fills the room, barely lighting anything, but allowing for a relaxing environment without leaving us in complete darkness.
When the tub is full Azriel slowly steps in and lowers us into the large basin, still nuzzling into my neck while I straddle his lap.
“Az,” I murmur, but he shushes me quietly.
“Let's not talk about it yet. I just wanna sit here with you.”
His expression looks so hopeful so I just lay my head against his shoulder and let him gently clean me off with the washcloth.
I am sick and tired of all the whitewashed Azriel art !!!!! This man is not a pasty white man!!! Stop it!!!!!!!
Wrongly Accused - Azriel x Reader (smut)
Fanart by LadyCamafeo on DeviantArt
Request: “angst to smut and then fluff” - Reader is a healer working for the Inner Circle, convinced that Azriel doesn’t like her.
Warnings: smut!!!! don’t read if you aren’t 18! also angst
Word Count: 6,000 (sorry)
A/N: Here’s another Azriel one! Sorry it took me about a week to write, I’m not amazing at writing smut and didn’t want it to be horrendous. I have a few more Azriel fics to write that people have requested, as well as one about Cassian! Feel free to request other stuff, but know it might take me a little longer to write it. I hope you enjoy! :)
Your father worked as an apothecary in Velaris, running a small shop to sell medicines and offer treatment when needed. You’d helped him ever since you were little - stocking supplies and bandaging small injuries. Over time, you developed a genuine interest in medicine and the chemistry behind it, working with your father as he developed new treatments for the common illnesses and ailments in the City of Starlight.
One night while your father was out on a house call, the High Lord of the Night Court himself had winnowed into your house after a mission had gone awry. He’d been seeking your father’s medical attention, of course, but he wouldn’t be home for hours, leaving you to tend to Rhysand’s wounds as he collapsed on your kitchen floor. While cleaning out a large cut on his arm you’d realized he’d been poisoned somehow, his skin far too pale for the minimal amount of blood he’d lost, his veins a startling shade of green. Despite your panic you’d been able to find a suitable antidote to the poison, calming down only when his complexion returned to normal. You wrapped his wounds, dragged him onto your couch, and called it a night.
In the morning, he’d been shocked that you’d been able to heal him, explaining he’d been struck by a poisoned arrow in a remote part of the Night Court. Apparently the poison was quite obscure, and Rhysand had praised you for what he deemed was “superior medical knowledge.”
You’d chalked it all up to a lucky guess, and after a once-over from your father you sent the High Lord on his merry way. A week later, he returned and offered you a job as a healer in the House of Wind.
You’d been hesitant to accept - you didn’t want to leave your father to run the shop alone - but at the end of the day, Rhys paid you more, allowing you to buy more supplies and medicines for your father to use. Plus, the library in the House of Wind was humongous, and you’d be able to learn more about medicine and healing there.
In the end, you’d taken the job, getting a better paycheck and the best friends in the whole world at the same time.
The Inner Circle was more than a family, and they’d welcomed you into their lives as if they’d known you for centuries. Rhys and Amren dedicated themselves to furthering your education, with Rhys frequently leaving new books outside your door and Amren inviting you over to her apartment to study. Cassian had convinced you to let him teach you self-defense, and Mor brought you with her to Rita’s almost every weekend.
There was, however, one member of the Inner Circle who hardly acknowledged your presence. After years of living in the House of Wind, you were confident Azriel hated you.
What other explanation could there possibly have been for the way he treated you? He hardly talked to you unless it was necessary, giving you answers and replies that hardly qualified as sentences. And you didn’t miss the looks he gave you during dinners and meetings that, in your opinion, were borderlining on glares.
What really sucked was how badly you wanted to be his friend. On the rare occasions you saw him smile or even laugh, you wanted nothing more to make him as happy as the other members of the Inner Circle did. But deep down you knew that would never happen; he simply wanted nothing to do with you, and that hurt.
But you ignored it, ignored his side-eyes and curt answers and obvious dislike of you. You understood it, you were a stranger who started living in his house and joined his centuries-old friend group. So you pushed all your own feelings aside and pretended that being in the same room as him didn’t spike your anxiety.
The most you’d ever done was ask Mor about it on your way to Rita’s one night. She’d dismissed you with a laugh and a wave of her hand: He’s just quiet, she said. But why did it feel so much more personal than that?
You didn’t want to cause any more trouble than you clearly already had, so you stayed out of his way, only asking him for anything when absolutely necessary.
But as months and then years went by, the anxiety he gave you only worsened. You’d stopped going to their weekly dinners, electing to stay up in your room or visit your father, and only attended meetings when your presence was necessary. Amren had asked you once if everything was okay, but you’d plastered a happy smile on your face and assured her you were just busy. You knew she didn’t believe you, but she didn’t pry.
What really sucked was that you’d stopped going to the library to avoid Azriel. It was one of your favorite places in the House of Wind, though apparently also one of his, considering he was almost always there when you were. Rhys brought you enough books for it not to matter much, but it wasn’t the same as reading in the library’s cozy chairs. You would move them near the windows, admiring the view of Velaris whenever you put your book down. Your room did not match the library’s aesthetic at all, but you were not willing to subject yourself to Azriel’s unfriendliness.
You still trained with Cassian once or twice a week, still visited Amren occasionally, still went out with Morrigan most weekends. But other than those few hours with your friends, other than the weekly trips down to your father, you kept to yourself.
You mostly stayed on your floor, studying on your balcony or in the sitting room a few doors down. Some nights, after everyone had gone to sleep, you’d creep down to the kitchen and read while you made yourself a midnight snack.
That was how you’d chosen to spend tonight, your books and notes laid out across the table while you stood in front of the stove, waiting patiently for the kettle to boil. You’d decided to make yourself tea, picking out a nice herbal variety so that you wouldn’t have any trouble sleeping when you decided to go to bed. You were humming to yourself softly, studying the designs on the mug you’d chosen, when you heard a small rustling behind you.
You glanced over your shoulder, eyes widening at the sight of Azriel sitting at the table, head propped up on his hand as he read a page of your notes.
He glanced up at you, your eyes meeting briefly, and you turned back to the stove. Perhaps you were having visions? You turned around again…
Alas, he was still there. Not a vision, you decided.
You bit your lip, looking between him and the kettle as your pulse quickened.
“Would you, uh, like some?” you asked, gesturing to the now boiling kettle and hoping he wouldn’t pick up on the slight shake in your voice.
He gave you a slight nod.
“There’s, um, black tea,” you offered, grabbing another mug from the cabinet above you. “But that’s caffeinated so you might stay up for a while if you drink that. I’m having herbal tea which doesn’t do that as much...there’s also green tea.” Your voice trailed off as you picked up the kettle, giving Azriel a cautious glance.
He shrugged. “I don’t know much about tea.”
“Okay!” you said rather shrilly, Azriel jumping a little in his seat. You pretended not to notice, focusing instead on pouring water into the two mugs on the counter. Your brows furrowed in concentration, yelping a bit as a bit of the boiling water spilled onto the counter.
You heard Azriel move in the chair behind you but held your other hand out to stop him.
“It’s good, I’m good,” you rambled nervously, setting the kettle down. You grabbed another tea bag and dropped it into his cup.
“You have to wait a bit before you drink it,” you explained, picking the two mugs up and turning towards the table. “It has to steep, and cool down.”
You set the two mugs on the table, pushing one over to him. He wrapped his hands around it slowly, as if afraid it might break.
You stared at your tea silently, hesitant to say anything else. This was the first time you’d been alone with Azriel in...weeks? Months?
Surprisingly, he was the one who broke the silence.
“Your notes are very detailed,” he said awkwardly, gesturing to the piece of paper he’d been reading before.
“Oh, thank you,” you replied, cheeks heating up a bit. “I spend a lot of time on them, maybe a bit too much.”
“The drawings are very realistic, I like them.” He brought the mug up to his lips and took a small sip. You gave him a small smile and glanced down at your hands.
“I haven’t seen you in the library in a while,” he continued.
You shrugged as if you had no idea. “I guess I’ve been busy.”
“Busy?” Azriel asked incredulously. “Doing what, may I ask?”
You frowned at him. “I’ll have you know I do quite a lot around here. Rhys is having me modernize a bunch of old medical texts. That’s a lot of work.”
“Enough to justify you staying out of the library for two months?” he asked.
“Quit stalking me,” you muttered quietly, grip tightening around your mug.
“My job is to watch people, Y/N,” he said easily.
“To watch people who could be threats,” you clarified, sending him a pointed glare. “Which I am not.”
He just stared back at you, and you felt a stab of betrayal at his silence.
“You think I’m a threat?” you asked, hurt evident in your voice.
“I never said that,” he replied quickly, but you were already standing up from the table.
“You also didn’t say I wasn’t.” You began piling your books and notes together, him standing up as if to stop you.
“You’ve been distant for months,” he stated, grabbing your wrist. “Missing meetings, avoiding people.”
“And?” you hissed, pulling your hand out of his grip.
“I’ve noticed in my line of work that people tend to withdraw from others when they’re plotting something,” he said bluntly. You gasped, taking a step backwards from him as if he’d slapped you across the face.
“You think I’m plotting something?” you seethed, no longer trying to keep your voice down.
“What other reason would you have to elude all of us?” he asked.
“To avoid you, Azriel!” you shouted, stepping forward and slamming your hand on the table.
His eyes widened in surprise, mouth opening as you grabbed your stack of books.
“Do not think,” you interrupted, “that I haven’t realized how you’ve regarded me these past few years.” Your voice was steady despite how angry you were.
“What are you talking about?”
“Oh come on,” you seethed. “You glare at me like I’m some lowlife at every meeting, every dinner, every time I see you in the library.”
“I don’t glare at you,” he said incredulously, giving you a confused look as you shook your head.
“You do glare,” you maintained. “And you don’t reply to me half the time, you’re the only person in this whole house who's never gone out of their way to talk to me. But then again, you think I’m some scheming infiltrator, so that all makes sense now.”
“I don’t think that!” he yelled.
“You just accused me of plotting something!” you reminded him angrily. “I literally avoid you because I don’t want to make you hate me more than you already do and you think I’m planning some act of betrayal!”
He just stared at you, mouth opening and closing wordlessly.
“Do you not care that I have spent every day of my time here terrified of upsetting you?” you shouted. But he remained silent.
And your whole facade crumbled.
“Do you not care?” you asked again, quietly, eyes widening as hurt replaced your anger. You let out a shaky breath, tears forming in your eyes, and turned towards the doorway.
“Y/N-” Azriel started, but you were already walking out of the room. He called after you again, and again. You did not turn around.
You were halfway up the stairs when you bumped into Rhys, tears spilling down your face as you let out a choked sob.
His eyes widened in shock. “Oh my gods, Y/N, what happened?”
You stepped back as he reached out to you, shaking your head at the confusion on his face.
“I can’t do this anymore, Rhys,” you rambled, voice shaking. “I can’t, not when he ignores me for years and then accuses me of fucking treason.”
“What? Who?” Rhys asked frantically, brows rising as Azriel appeared at the bottom of the stairs. You let out another sob, and then shook your head.
“I quit,” you managed between sobs. “I quit.”
And then you were racing up the stairs to your room, slamming the door behind you and collapsing on the bed. You heard several different knocks, but you answered none. Instead, you gathered up all your things and shoved them into the bag you kept under your bed. You left the books Rhys had given you in a stack near the door, left the dress Mor had let you wear one weekend laid out on the bed.
Before the sun rose, you snuck out of your room, out of the house, and walked down the ten thousand stairs leading back to Velaris.
You’d been away for a whole week, working long hours at your father’s shop and spending the remainder of the day asleep. It was easier to push aside your feelings that way, easier to throw yourself into work than think about how badly Azriel had hurt your feelings.
It was early one morning while you were bandaging a young child that Azriel had walked into the shop, glancing at you as he made his way over to the waiting area.
Your eyes widened in shock and then narrowed into a pointed glare, half of you wanting to curse him out and make him leave. But the other half of you knew that would terrify the child in front of you, so you took a deep breath and plastered a fake smile on your face.
“That man looks scary,” they whispered to you, eyes wide with fear as they took in Azriel’s wings and the shadows that wrapped around him. Azriel turned towards you slightly, no doubt listening to your conversation.
“It’s wrong to judge others by their looks alone,” you murmured, tucking the ends of the bandage into place.
You glanced towards the front door as your father walked in, obviously struggling as he carried in a stack of supply crates.
“Good morning Y/N!”
Wordlessly, Azriel walked over to help him. You hadn’t told your father why you’d come back from the House of Wind, so his eyes lit up at the sight of the tall Illyrian.
“Ah, hello spymaster!” he greeted cheerily. “How can we help you today?”
“I came to talk to Y/N, actually,” Azriel replied carefully, sending a cautious look in your direction. “Where would you like me to put these?”
You scowled as your father directed Azriel into the backroom, pushing yourself up from where you’d been kneeling on the floor and patting your patient on the shoulder.
“You’re all set!” you smiled, helping the child out of the chair they’d been sitting in.
“Thank you!” they exclaimed, giving you a bright smile and prancing off towards the door.
“Be careful!” you called after them, walking over to the supply cabinet and returning the bandage roll to its drawer.
You stiffened as Azriel walked out of the storage room, watching out of the corner of your eye as he made his way over to you.
He stopped a few feet away, looking at you almost nervously.
“Yes?” you asked, turning your head to glare at him.
“I’ve come to apologize.” His voice was soft.
You laughed humorlessly. “Did Rhys force you to come?” You scoffed as Azriel nodded, rolling your eyes and turning to face the bookshelf by the window.
“I did want to apologize of my own accord,” Azriel replied quickly. You could hear his unease. “Rhys just...urged me to do so sooner rather than later.”
“Ah, does the mighty High Lord miss my presence? Did he think I’d be moved by your apology and want to come back?” you said sarcastically. Azriel looked down at the floor in front of him.
“Everyone, not just Rhys, misses you.” His voice was quiet. “And Cassian is convinced he’s going to get wounded during a mission and die because you won’t be there to fix him up. He keeps complaining about it, actually.”
You chuckled at that, the corners of Azriel’s mouth turning up slightly.
“I don’t want to beg you to return, but I will if I must,” Azriel continued. “Amren demanded I bring you back.”
You remained silent, weighing the options in your head.
“You can tell Amren I’ll be back tonight,” you said finally.
“I can bring you there now, if you want,” he offered. You shook your head.
“I’ll be there tonight,” you restated bluntly, grabbing a few pieces of parchment off the bookshelf and walking towards the backroom. You cast a dismissive glance back at him. “Goodbye, Azriel.”
Hours later, after you’d repacked your belongings and helped your father with his weekly shopping, you began the long trek up to the House of Wind.
If ten thousand steps going downhill was a challenge, ten thousand steps in the other direction was practically impossible. But you were too stubborn to accept help from Azriel, and too prideful to ask Rhys or Cassian either.
It was the middle of the night when you finally finished the climb and made your way into the large living room. Rhys was sitting on a large couch - obviously having stayed up waiting for you - and sent you a rather mean glare as you walked over towards him.
“I’ve been sitting here for hours,” he frowned.
“Hello to you too, gracious High Lord,” you feigned a bow, plopping yourself down in an armchair across from him. You groaned in exhaustion, reaching down to rub your sore leg muscles.
“You do realize Azriel could’ve flown you up, right?” Rhys asked bluntly, clearly unamused by your stunt.
“I don’t need his help,” you retorted, “nor do I want it.”
“I take it you haven’t accepted his apology?”
You shook your head. “It’s gonna take a hell of a lot more than some forced apology for me to forgive him.” Rhys sighed, pinching the bridge of his nose.
“He really is sorry.”
“Oh, I’m sure he is,” you retorted. “He all but accused me of treason, he’d better be fucking sorry.”
“Even before this whole accusation thing, he’s never been nice to me,” you interrupted, throwing your hands in the air. “That alone is hard to forgive, let alone suggesting I was plotting against you all.”
“Perhaps it’s time to turn over a new leaf,” Rhys suggested. You gave him an incredulous look.
“Oh, should I bake him cookies?” you suggested sarcastically. “Here you go Azriel, after years of treating me like crap, I’ve come bearing gifts in the name of friendship!”
Rhys groaned, throwing his head back against the couch in defeat.
“All I’ve ever wanted was to be his friend,” you huffed. “Do you know how jealous I am of all of you? You make him smile and laugh like it’s no big deal, meanwhile the only reactions I can get out of him are mean looks and psychological analyses.”
Rhysand gave you a curious look. “Jealous?” he asked. You shrugged.
“I want to be able to make him happy, too,” you admitted defeatedly. “That’s why I started avoiding him. I figured I just made him upset.”
“That’s not true!” Rhys insisted, but you shook your head.
“I don’t want to talk about this anymore,” you said, standing up and grabbing your bags from off the floor. Rhys just gave you a scandalized look as you made your way towards the stairs.
“You can’t just go to bed after saying something like that!” he called after you. “All of that was completely untrue, we have to unpack that!”
“Goodnight, oh mighty bat man!” you called back as you climbed up the staircase.
Rhys cast a sad glance at the far corner of the living room. You’d failed to notice the winged male standing in the shadows, a broken look on his face.
You’d started reading in the library again.
Something about the whole last week and a half had given you a much needed reality check. You lived in this damn house, for crying out loud! You could read a book in the library if you wanted to.
And who were you to care about bothering Azriel? You scoffed just thinking about it - there was no use trying to tiptoe around him anymore.
It was raining outside. You were sitting at a table, reading a book about muscle healing techniques, when two scarred hands slammed down on the wooden surface in front of you.
You glanced up, furrowing your eyebrows at the rather angry look on Azriel’s face.
“Can’t you see I’m busy?” you asked rhetorically, redirecting your gaze to the book in your hands.
You shouted in protest when he pulled the book away from you. “Give that back!” you yelled, lunging across the table.
He took a step back, out of your reach. “Not until you explain...this.” He gestured towards you briefly.
“What the hell do you mean?” you asked incredulously, eye wide in confusion. “Give me my book back!”
“Why were you avoiding me?” he asked. You groaned.
“I didn’t want to bother you! Can you just give me my book back?” He shook his head, lips pursed together in thought.
“See, that’s where you’ve got me confused,” he said, hazel eyes fixed on you intently. “When did I ever give you that idea?”
“That I bother you?” you asked, raising an eyebrow as he nodded. “Oh, I don’t know Azriel, maybe all the times you’ve glared at me during meetings or given me half-assed answers when I asked for something?”
He glared at you, jaw clenching. You rolled your eyes and stuck out your hand.
“I answered your question, I want my book back.”
He shook his head. “I don’t glare at you. I’ve never glared at you.”
“You certainly don’t give me happy looks!” you retorted. “I’ve lived here for years and you’ve never once smiled at me or something I’ve said. I know I’m funny, everyone else likes my jokes!”
“Does that bother you?” he asked lowly.
“Of course it does!” you replied, eyes darting between his face and your book.
“Why?” he asked, hazel eyes boring into yours. You opened your mouth, then paused. You bit your lip, face heating up as you realized you didn’t have an answer. “Why?” he repeated.
“I don’t know!” you stammered. “Azriel I just want my book back, I walked all the way up here yesterday and my legs are very sore, and I’m trying to figure out how to make them stop feeling like jelly…”
Azriel kept his gaze fixed on you as he moved around the table, looking far too predatory for your liking. You took a step back nervously as he approached you, then another, grimacing as your back hit one of the large marble columns holding up the ceiling.
“Why does it bother you?” he asked again, voice softer but even more intense.
“Would you back up a bit?” you hissed, heart pounding as he kept drawing nearer.
“Answer my question,” he growled, stopping right in front of you. He reached out and gripped the marble on both sides of you, effectively trapping you against the column.
You gulped, looking up at him and taking in his strong jawline, his darkened eyes.
“I don’t know!” you cried again. You pushed your hands against his toned chest, frowning when he did not budge. “Move!”
He chuckled lowly, and your eyes went wide.
You stammered for a second, giving him a confused look. “Did I make you laugh?”
“I wouldn’t consider that a whole laugh,” he said with a small smirk. “Maybe a half.” Your jaw dropped.
“What is happening?” you spluttered, frantically looking between his face and his hands and his damn smirk.
Gods, you could get used to a view like this.
“You don’t bother me,” he said finally, gazing down at you with glazed over eyes. “I don’t know where you got that idea.” You leaned your head back against the column, bewildered. “And I do laugh at your jokes.”
“I...I thought you didn’t pay any attention to me,” you clamored, mind spinning when he shook his head.
“On the contrary, Y/N, I pay too much attention to you,” he answered with a gorgeous grin. “Half the time I can’t keep myself from staring at you. Perhaps you’ve been mistaking those looks as glares.”
“That can’t be,” you whispered, brows knit together. “I thought…” You trailed off, speaking proving to be too difficult as you lost yourself in his eyes.
And then he was leaning down, your heart practically leaping out of your chest at the realization that hit you. He was leaning down...leaning…
“Azriel,” you whispered.
And then his lips were on yours, and all you wanted was him.
You pushed yourself up into him, mouths meeting in a heated battle as he moved his hands to cradle your face. You moaned, head reeling as he slipped his tongue into your mouth, as he trailed a hand down to your hip.
You threw your arms around his neck and jumped, wrapping your legs around him as he slammed you back into the marble column. You moaned again, tilting your head up as he began exploring your neck with his mouth.
His name was like a chant on your lips, a cry leaving your mouth as he bit down on the skin between your neck and your shoulder. He growled, bringing a hand up to fondle one of your breasts.
“Azriel... Azriel please,” you begged, arching into his hand.
“What do you want?” he murmured, eyes dark as he watched you writhe against him.
You moaned loudly, the obscene noise echoing throughout the library.
“Touch me,” you managed, your core clenching as he groaned.
He whisked you away from the column, turning around and laying you on top of the table you’d been reading at minutes ago. You pulled him down on top of you, lips colliding in a sloppy mix of tongue and teeth. You didn’t care.
You trailed your hands down the broad expanse of his back, fingers brushing against the base of his wings. He shuddered against you, shadows tickling your skin sensually.
“Take this off,” you murmured, tugging at his shirt.
He was happy to oblige, pushing himself off you and pulling his shirt over his head. You groaned, trailing your hand down your body at the sight of him.
You grabbed at the laces that held the front of your dress together, undoing the knot as Azriel helped you shimmy out of it. He let out a wanton moan at the sight of your bare breasts, surging forward to capture one in his mouth and cupping the other in his hand.
You threw your head back, moaning as he made his way down from your breast to your stomach.
He looked up at you, hands gripping the fabric now bunched around your hips. You bit your lip and nodded, heat pooling in your stomach as Azriel slid the rest of the dress off of you. His eyes darkened at your body, displayed for him on top of the table.
“Let me just admire you for a moment,” he murmured, hand tracing a line from your navel to your thigh.
You gasped, arching your back as his fingers ghosted over the apex of your thighs. You were dripping.
“What do you want, darling?” Azriel drawled, grinning as you moaned loudly. “Use your words for me.”
“Please,” you panted as he dragged his hands down your sides, grinding desperately against nothing, relishing in the heat of his hands and the cold of his shadows.
“What do you want?” he whispered again, and you spread your legs.
“I want you here.”
He let out a strangled groan, dropped to his knees, and pressed his mouth against your aching core.
“Azriel!” you cried breathlessly, hips lurching as pleasure jolted up your spine. He snarled, throwing your legs over his shoulders. You moaned loudly, writhing in pleasure as he sucked your clit.
“Keep these still,” he growled, draping an arm over your hips and lowering his head again.
Your breath hitched as the coil in your center began to tighten, shaking legs clenched around the sides of Azriel’s face.
You glanced down, taking in the sight of Azriel going down on you as if his life depended on it - his nose rubbings against your clit, little pieces of his hair clinging to his forehead.
Azriel’s gaze snapped up to yours as a breathless moan left your lips, eyes blown out with lust. He thrust his tongue into you and you gasped, back arching off the table.
It was Azriel’s languid moan against your heat that spurred on your orgasm, your cries ricocheting throughout the library as waves of pleasure crashed over you. Azriel kept working you as you came, forcing you to push his head away when it finally became too much.
“Tapping out?” he asked cockily as he pushed himself back onto his feet. You glared, ignoring the way your heart swelled at the signs of your pleasure glistening on his face.
“Was that all you had to offer, shadowsinger?” you teased, sucking in a breath as Azriel’s face darkened.
Azriel made a move for the string of his pants, glancing up at you as if he half-expected you to stop him.
“Keep going,” you urged, smiling as you propped yourself up on your elbows to watch. He gave you a small smile, undoing the knot and ridding himself of his pants and underwear.
Your eyes widened as his size; apparently, the saying about an Illyrian male’s wings was true. He was more than endowed, and your mouth practically watered at the sight of him. You trailed your eyes back up his toned body, melting at the nervous look on his face.
“I want you inside me,” you said with a smile, reaching your hands out for him.
A look of relief washed over his features as he moved forward, grabbing your outstretched hands as he bent down over you for a kiss.
You flung your arms around his shoulders, tongue moving against his as your mouths collided. He groaned, trailing his calloused hands down to your thighs.
He spread them apart and wrapped them around his waist in one fell swoop, pulling back to ask for your permission one last time.
“Are you sure?” he asked softly.
“Gods, Az, just fuck me,” you replied, throwing your head back against the table as he thrust into you.
He groaned, pushing into your heat until he had bottomed out. You gasped, trembling as you basked in the searing pleasure of him inside you.
“Is...do you feel good?” he huffed, clearly making a large effort to not start pounding into you.
“Move,” you panted, eyes closed as you rotated your hips frantically. “Please move.”
“My pleasure,” Azriel moaned, pulling back slightly and snapping his hips forward.
You were a moaning mess as he started a slow but steady pace, moving your hands to grip his biceps as he thrust into you again and again.
“Faster,” you breathed, moaning as Azriel pressed his forehead against your and quickened the pace. You admired the sounds coming from him, the shaky breaths and occasional groans.
You cried as he hit that one spot deep inside you. His hips stilled for a moment.
“There?” he asked, giving another experimental thrust. This time your back arched, toes curling as he grinned.
He began speeding up again, stroking the flame inside you as he hit that same spot with every thrust.
You were reduced to wordless cries, jolting every time he sheathed himself within you. Your eyes snapped open as Azriel let out a true moan, pulling yourself up crash your lips against his.
He grabbed onto one of your legs again, hitching it above his shoulder as he continued fucking into you. You cried into his mouth, body tensing up with anticipation as he brought his thumb to your clit roughly.
“Are you going to cum?” he asked breathlessly, hips snapping into yours at an almost inhuman speed.
As if in response your core tightened, back arching off the table as you came with a sob. Your hips writhed against his as you rode out your second orgasm of the night, entire body trembling as you clutched onto him for some kind of stability.
You felt his grip on your hip tighten, felt something within him snap as he pulled out of you, letting out an animalistic roar as he came. You gasped, hot ribbons shooting onto your stomach and breasts.
You felt dizzy as you opened your eyes, immediately blushing at the way Azriel was studying your body from above you. You glanced down, biting your lip at the sight of his cum painting your skin.
“That’s hot,” you grinned, chest heaving as you tried to catch your breath. Azriel let out a strained chuckle, grinning as he pushed himself up and collapsed next to you.
“You’re hot,” he replied bluntly, closing his eyes as he combed his hair back.
You fell into a contented silence, save for the two of you panting as if you’d just worked out. Though, you supposed fucking could be considered a workout in some regards.
“I suppose you don’t hate me as much as I thought you did?” you asked finally, turning your head to gaze at him.
He shook his head with a smile, stretching his arms above his head on the wooden tabletop. “I never hated you.”
“Well, that would’ve been nice to know,” you laughed. “Gods, we could’ve been having ridiculously hot sex for years!”
Azriel laughed, really laughed, deep voice sounding throughout the room as you smiled brightly. His laugh had always been beautiful, but it sounded so much more special now that you were the one who caused it.
“I suppose the whole house knows we’ve reconciled,” he hummed thoughtfully.
You nodded, lips pursed. “We were indeed quite loud.”
He turned to face you, smiling as your eyes trailed down his body.
“I do own a small cabin in the woods north of Velaris,” he said slowly, a jovial smirk on his face. “I’m sure it wouldn’t matter how loud we were there. Hypothetically speaking, of course.”
You grinned. “I think we should ask Rhys to send us on a retreat to further explore our new friendship. For purely professional purposes.”
“Yes, I’m sure that would have a significant effect on workplace morale,” Azriel replied, biting back a smile as he reached out a hand to stroke your face. You hummed, leaning into the touch.
“You know, I haven’t taken one vacation the whole time I’ve worked here,” you said, watching Azriel’s face contort with realization.
“I don’t think I have either,” he stated alarmedly, a suggestive look quickly overtaking his face. “I think now would be a great time to invoke all the vacation time we’ve earned.”
You grinned, rolling on top of Azriel and kissing him again.
Since matching up the House of Wind Gang with kittens became a thing, here are my contributions:
Gwyn and Emerie showing Nesta a true friendship for the first time
Az when Cassian and Nesta fucked at the table he eats
Cassian when he accidentally set Velaris on fire while babysitting Nyx
Nesta at the winter solstice // also Nesta at the winter solstice
Emerie growing vegetables in Illyria
Nesta and Gwyn when the bat boys find them cuddling with each other and not with them
Cassian trying to get Nesta's attention when she's reading
Azriel doing the same thing with Gwyn
The whole gang reunited
I’ve finally done it, all three Bat Boys caught on camera! The Polaroid style border was to make sure I didn’t get carried away, spending unseemly amounts of time on drawing when I do in fact have real-life responsibilities!
These are for a friend who is obsessed with ACOTAR as birthday surprise! Next on my agenda, the fierce and beautiful ACOTAR women!
P.s feel free to reblog my art but please don’t steal it and claim it as your own x
Waking up - Azriel x reader fluff
Tw: None. Just fluff
Azriel and his mate wake up.
The sun was shining brightly through the windows. It was already past dawn, meaning you had finally slept a full night.
You could feel Azriel’s warm body pressed against yours. He was sleeping with his face in your hair, his breathing even and soft.
You were happy Azriel was still sleeping. Normally, he would be awake or starting his day at dawn, since he couldn’t sleep. You hated that he had those sleepless nights. You yourself were familiar with them.
Last night, the two of you had gone to bed early. Normally, you would spent the evenings working, training, reading or many other things. But it was needed, a night alone.
You two had spend the night cuddling and sharing kissing while talking softly about everything that happened the past few weeks.
You were snapped out of your thoughts by Azriel, who tightened his grip around your waist. You turned around in his arms, now facing him.
“Hello.” you whispered softly. Azriel’s eyes fluttered open. He gave you a soft smile.
Even though he had slept the entire night, he still looked tired.
You put your hand in his hair, moving your fingers through it. He closed his eyes again.
“You know we have things to do today, right?” you laughed softly.
Azriel put his head against your chest. “I don’t care.” he murmured.
You let out another soft laugh. Azriel lifted his head and met your eyes. “I don’t want to get out of bed.” he said with a grin.
“I know.” you felt his arms pull you closer, if that was even possible. “I don’t think Rhys would like it if we didn’t show up.”
“I don’t care about Rhys. It’s not like he’ll barge in or something.” Azriel said. You snorted.
“He’ll let Cassian do that.” you could feel Azriel’s grin against you.
You stayed like that for the next few minutes. Azriel’s head against your chest and his arms around you while you moved your fingers through his hair.
“Did you sleep well?” you asked softly, not sure if he fell asleep again.
“I always sleep good when you’re next to me.” he said.
You felt your lips tug upwards, a soft smile forming on your face. Azriel lifted his head and pulled you into kiss, his hand behind your head.
You deepened the kiss, your mouth moving in perfect sync with Azriel’s.
Azriel groaned into your mouth, and you knew you wouldn’t get out of bed any time soon.
The moment he placed a hand on your stomach, the door flung open.
You immediately pulled away out of shock. It was stupid not to lock the door. The people in this house didn’t care about anything, they always barged in.
Cassian stood in the doorway, looking at you and Azriel.
“You two are late.” he said. You could hear how he tried to keep his voice neutral.
Cassian sighed, “I pulled the short stick.” he said.
You burst out in laughter, even though he had almost walked in on you and Azriel.
“Sorry for interrupting!” he yelled while he closed the door, leaving you and Azriel alone again.
You could read the shame he felt in his eyes as he sighed. Both of you knew you wouldn’t hear the end of it for the next few days.
“Well, there goes my fun.” he said as he stood from the bed.
You pulled him back one more time, placing a quick kiss on his lips. “Don’t worry, I still love you.”
The Men of ACOTAR as fathers
(Including Rhysand, Cassian, Azriel, and Lucien)
Rhysand: The Encouraging Father
Don’t get me wrong, Rhysand is doting AF, but his number one priority is making sure his children have a sense of autonomy.
He knows he leads a dangerous life, and wants them prepared as possible should something happen to him (though he would never say as much).
But he doesn’t point them in any direction. He lets them discover their passions and encourages them to pursue them to the fullest extent.
Nyx confesses that he would like to be High Lord someday. Rhysand says he wants Nyx to accompany him to the next grievance meeting.
Nyx changes his mind and says he wants to pursue art. Rhysand tells him to attend his mother’s classes at her studio.
It is so important to Rhysand that they follow their dreams to the fullest.
He’s also the king of banishing nightmares and monsters. Dries tears and replaces them with fits of laughter until his kids fall back asleep.
Does not give a fuck about things getting messy or dirty. Treats his shirts like napkins. Wears food stains like badges of honor. Paint on the rug — whatever, it’s better that way. Torn pages out of an ancient text — it’s fine. Starfall glitter all over the drapes — looks like they had fun!
He’s also, surprisingly, the champion of bedtime stories and silly faces.
Kid count: 3 (one boy, two girls)
Cassian: The Sappy Father
Immediately, right off the bat, Cassian is wrapped around his daughter’s finger (eventually daughters’ fingers).
And he’s a big ass cry baby for every event, every achievement they make (and yeah, so is Nesta).
First word. Tears. First steps. Tears. First flight. Tears. First lost tooth. Absolutely sobs.
He’s not very protective, but that’s because he is highly encouraging that his children defend themselves. He calls them his “Valkyries.”
“They pushed you? Push them back.” “They glared at you? Well, you know how your mother glares? Give them that and see what happens.” “Who yelled at you? Roar in their face.”
He’s also pretty relaxed when it comes to dating (Nesta is the more scathing when it comes to vetting potential partners). Cassian is the ultimate wingman (no pun intended) for his daughters. “Oh, yeah? Petra is impressive with spears. You two should spar.” “Athena is probably the funniest of all my daughters.” “Lyria was right. You are charming.” It’s a little embarrassing to his girls but much appreciated.
He’s also the father who is asking for more kids. Anytime Nesta shows the slightest affection for someone else’s children, he throws her a roguish smile. She cuts him off after four daughters, but he gets awfully close to breaking her will power on more than a few occasions.
Kid count: 4 (four daughters and is perpetually begging for just one more)
Azriel: The Papa Bear
The most protective father of all the bat boys.
A scraped knee. “What happened? Who did this? Oh, you fell? You’re sure you weren’t pushed? You can tell me.” A single tear. “Who said something? Tell me their name. I’ll go to their parents.” A tutor makes a complaint. “Sounds like you’re shit at your job and intimidated by a child.”
He’s also the surprisingly gentle father. He encourages tears and long talks about feelings. As a result his children come to him for everything and there are no secrets they withhold from him. It makes Gwyn a little jealous.
Azriel is the only dad that gets invited out with the next generation kids. The inner circle will be chilling in the river house and Nyx will show up with the other kids to say: “Are you sure you don’t want to come, Uncle Az? It’s open stage night at Rita’s.” Rhysand and Cassian are both shocked and jealous, but Azriel waves off the High Lord’s son lazily, “Not tonight. Have fun.” There are groans of disappointment from their kids before they depart because Uncle Az is the best and he can drink all of them under the table.
Azriel is also the champion of midnight snacks. He can sneak you into the kitchen and prepare an entire feast at two in the morning without making a sound. At first it’s just him and Gwyn. But then their daughter has bouts of insomnia and joins them. Then their son can’t sleep because of nightmares and joins them. Then their other son is jealous everyone is up but him and midnight snacks are often a family event.
He’s also, of course, the king of lullabies. Together he and Gwyn can get any child to sleep, and their family has often called for their assistance in getting their kids to shut their eyes for just a few hours.
Surprisingly, despite his worries of being a good father, Azriel is also the father everyone goes to for advice on parenting since he has the most open line of communication with all the kids.
Kid count: 3 (one daughter, two boys)
Lucien: The Fun Dad
Lucien agrees to have a child with Elain after many years. He’s never really considered fatherhood, but he has nothing against it and his mate wants very badly to be a mother. So he agrees. Excited to be a father, but not exactly counting down the days like Cassian or being hyper-prepared like Azriel.
So it takes him by surprise when he realizes: “Holy shit, I love kids.”
Because his son always laughs at his jokes and his daughter thinks he’s the “funnest dad in the entire world.”
Elain isn’t surprised (not just because she’s a seer, but because it’s obvious) when Lucien wants more kids.
And more and more and more. Lucien adores parenthood so much that he confesses he wants as many as he can get his hands on. With the help of Azriel he hand makes an enormous bed for him and Elain where all of his children can swarm him in the mornings.
And Elain loves being a mom. They make an amazing team. She kisses away the scrapes and Lucien teases away the tears.
Eventually, when they become teenagers, his kids find him a little embarrassing, but Lucien thrives on the “dad, you are embarrassing me” energy. He knows they’ll outgrow it for one, but he also sees right through them. He’s too self assured to overlook that they’re smiling whenever he demands a kiss goodbye or that they quietly laugh when he makes a dumb joke.
And when they grow up and move out, similar to Azriel, Lucien becomes his kids’ best friend. They go to him to complain and to cry and to ask for advice.
Lucien also collects each and every handmade gift his kids give him. He stores them safely after putting them on display for all to see for at least a week.
Oh, and Lucien is amazing at doing his daughter’s hair. In fact, Cassian comes to him for advice and recommendations for hair products.
Kid count: 6 (five boys, one girl… for now)
Rhysand saving the day 😌
❄️ I want you to know
That I’ll never leave you
‘Cause I’m Mr. Snow
Till death we’ll be freezing
Yeah, you are my home
My home for all seasons
So come on, let's go ❄️
I imagine them having people over at the House of Wind for Winter Solstice. Gwyn and Azriel have been dancing around each other with flirty comments dashed into their conversations and longing glances while the other isn’t looking. But something about the holidays brings everyone closer, brings out those unspoken words.
Gwyn is there across the room, magnetized by his voice. Azriel sings every single word for her, every note meant for her.
Gwyn can’t help but be pulled toward him, a force she’ll willingly follow. Her steps are quiet and soft, a contrast to her thundering heart. Azriel finishes the song, the last note lingering in the air.
He notices her scent before he even turns his head. Smooth caramel, warm and bright and everything he’s ever needed. Azriel looks up at Gwyn, her scent, her eyes, her beauty, all dripping over him and soothing his soul. He stands up and slowly cups her face with his scarred hands and whispers, “I want you to know that I’ll never leave you. Cause I’m Mr. Snow, till death we’ll be freezing.”
Gwyn tilts her head up, her nose touching his, “You are my home, my home for all seasons.” Soft whispers kissing his cheek with every verse. “So come on, let’s go.”
Az leans in and brushes her lips with a soft lingering, waiting for her. Gwyn wraps her hands around his neck and kisses him back with everything they’ve both been waiting for.
Wow ok this was going to be a cute little blurb and then I became INVESTED 😳 well I hope you enjoyed that, I certainly did 😂
I just love Gwynriel so much and you know that Az would respect her and love her and comfort her scars, and Gwyn would soothe him and bring back some warmth and ambition and love into his life. Yeah I have a lot of feels for this ship ok 🥺💕
Does SJM have a single endgame couple in any of her stories that don't banter?
To make an argument that SJM has been building up E/riel for the past four books when they don't have a single banter between them is bananas.
Why didn't they banter in ACOMAF? Nessian bantered their first time meeting each other.
Why didn't E/riel banter in ACOWAR when they were hanging out in the garden or when Az gave Elain Truth-Teller?
Why didn't they banter in ACOFAS at the Solstice family dinner or when he opened up her gift?
Or in ACOSF at the family dinner or Winter Solstice?
SJM had plenty of chances to prove that E/riel was endgame by having them banter, but she didn't. Instead, she chose to have Gwyn and Az banter throughout ACOSF and even in the bonus chapter, which she CHOSE to end with Az thinking about Gwyn's secret, lovely beauty.
Heyy! Can you do azriel x fem reader fluff that Azriel really likes to kiss her. They like to be connect with each other in every situation like even if it’s a hand touch on waist / arm. I just saw a gif that the boys kisses front of her shoulder ,back of her neck, side of her breasts like close to her back and inside of her thigh etc. I know it’s oddly spesific but I just can’t stop imagine how beautiful it would be in headcanon stuff. So can you please write something that includes these or these kind of intimacy💖 I’m okay with +18 stuff as long as you’re okay with it but I would love to be heartmelted by sweetness and love in the piece💖💖 Thank you even if you will do it or not 💖🥺 Love you!
okie dokie, I hope you like it. And sorry it took a little while
Azriel x fem!reader
"Warnings": I wouldn’t call this smut… there is some content, though, that may not be for younger viewers, per se, mostly it’s just kissing… and fluff...
word count: 960
As we walk down the street to the river house, Azriel’s hand brushes mine for a split second before his pinky hooks itself through mine. The first time Az did this, it caught me off guard; I knew he had an extreme hatred of his own hands, and he mentioned that he didn’t like hand-holding, so I never pushed it, but deep down: I wished he would hold my hand. And every day after that first time he would grab my pinky with his own, and with that little touch, he stole my heart.
Falling in love with him was the easiest thing I have ever done. The day I met him and every day since have been the best of my life. His kind words are music to my ears, and his gentle touches are all my soul needs to sing a response. He makes me want to smile forever and forget what sadness even feels like.
He isn’t one for big displays of public affection. He didn’t like bear hugs or kissing where other people might see, but he loved touching me in small gentle ways. And he loved kissing me when no one was looking. When we stood around the dining room table discussing plans for the upcoming war, Azriel stood behind me: an unmoving, unyielding force-just what I needed. He draped his arms gently on my hips and placed a light kiss on the back of my neck, reminding me of his presence even as I feared for his life in Rhys’ hands.
When I walked back to our house alone, my body missed the delicate touch of his pinky in my own more than anything else. My heart aches for his warmth against me. Tears nearly well up in my eyes, but I push them back down. I’m being sensitive for no reason at all; he isn’t even leaving yet. But that doesn’t mean I can’t still hate his job, even while I love him.
When I arrive home, alone, I collapse into our bed without him and stare at his pillow. Anxiety rushes through my body. What if he doesn’t come back to me? I know how powerful and capable he is, but this is one of Rhysands riskier plans.
It’s an hour later when I lay, still awake, on my back. I’m staring at the ceiling, making things worse by imagining all the horrible things that could happen, so I don’t even notice Azriel’s arrival until he’s kneeling on the bed near my feet.
I look down at him without moving and know he sees the worry in my eyes by the expression he returns. A second later, though, he’s placing a kiss on my ankle and making his way up my legs, pulling the blankets away from my body with him. I close my eyes and let my head rest on the pillow while Az makes his way up my body. He places a soft kiss on the inside of my thigh, sending shivers up my spine, and the next kiss lands on my hip bone as he lefts himself over me.
His nose brushes my naval as he pushes my shirt up. Another kiss lands above my belly button, making me giggle and squirm. I can feel Az’s smile widen against my stomach as he crawls further up and moves to the right. The next kiss, accompanied by a gentle bite, lands on the side of my left breast. I giggle again and lift my arms to rest above my head. His hands follow them, pinning my wrists to the bed as he re-centers himself to hover just above my face.
The next kiss is placed on my right shoulder, and the following one is a nip at my collarbone. I lean my head back, arching my neck up for him, and now he’s the one laughing, “eager, are we?”
I grumble something but am cut off by my moan as Azriel gently bites the side of my neck. He spends many minutes marking my neck and decorating it with bruises before his lips find my own. And as he kisses me: soft and slow, his hands leave my wrists and travel down my arms. When he reaches my shoulders, his right-hand moves toward my neck and the left continues its path down to grip my thigh, pulling my leg up to wrap around his waist as he presses closer to me.
His right hand is gently wrapping around my throat and pressing against the fresh bruises. And when a grin spreads across my face at the pleasurable burn, Azriel leans down to kiss me again but slowly pulls away while he does so.
A moment later, his hand is no longer wrapped around my throat; he isn’t holding my leg to him or grinding against me. He’s lying at my right and pulling me to face him. My face is in an expression of confusion, so he leans in to press a kiss to my nose.
“I love you,” he murmurs against my lips, “that just isn’t how I want to spend tonight. I’m tired; it’s been a long day. And all I want is to fall asleep with you in my arms.”
Pushing closer, I press my face into the side of his neck and wrap my arms around him, “ I love you, too,” I mumble, holding him as tight as I can, “promise me you’ll be careful on the mission.”
“Pinky promise,” he whispers back, a smile spreading across his face as he lifts his hand between our bodies. So I pull one of my hands back too and link my pinky with his, and we fall asleep like that: pinkies linked and hearts in one another's hands.
Request: Azriel x Reader
Hi!! After my long break, I’ve been working on some longer pieces but took a break from them to write this request! Send me some more ideas if you’ve got a request as well. This one is just over 1.5k words, very fluffy. Thanks to @decadentpalaceshoeknight for this request!! I hope you enjoy it! 🥰
Request: “Hi! I saw that your request are open and I really like your writing so I was wondering if you could do an Az x yn where Az is on a mission and told Cass to keep her safe but both Cass and yn get captured and Cass is trying to get her out ( bc they mostly torture her) bc he feels really guilty that he couldn't protect her and then Az finds them after a long time and it's very fluff thank you”
As the mate of the Night Court’s spymaster, Y/N was well-aware of the attention others gave her. She often felt as if she was being watched, observed, envied, and occasionally, plotted against. Azriel worried often about her safety, insisting she never go out anywhere on her own. As the only member of the Court of Dreams with little combat knowledge, Y/N was also the most vulnerable.
A disturbance in the Illyrian camps had come to Rhysand’s attention, and he asked Azriel to accompany him to investigate and speak with Devlon about what was going on. It plagued Azriel to leave Y/N, so he approached his brother the night before they left.
“Cass, you know how much she means to me,” Azriel begged. “I understand brother, I know that you would do the same for me if I needed to leave Nesta. Not that she needs much protection…” Cassian chuckled, thinking of his mate’s aggressive tendencies, “I won’t leave her side.” Azriel breathed a sigh of relief and went to spend one last night before the mission with his true love.
Y/N and Feyre stood at the entrance to the river house, ready to tell Azriel and Rhysand goodbye before their mission. Azriel hugged her tightly, pressing a gentle kiss to her temple, “Stay safe, angel. I’ll be back soon.” She looked up at him and smirked, “Come back in one piece, please.” He chuckled and released her from his grasp. He stood back with Rhysand and in a flash of darkness and shadow, they were winnowed away.
It had been several days since Azriel left on his mission. He had sent little messages down the bond to let Y/N know they were safe. Unrest in the Illyrian camps as not uncommon, they were merely playing referee between two groups that had a disagreement. In the meantime, Y/N had taken up playing chess against Cassian, which became more of a strategy lesson for her because playing against the highest General in the Night Court army was quite the challenge. In a too-much-wine-induced accident, Y/N had cut herself on a broken glass. The river house didn’t have any bandages left after Azriel and Cassian’s latest sparring session, so Cassian and Y/N left to fly and get some. It should’ve been a quick, easy trip. It should’ve taken no time at all. It was such a little deal that Y/N hadn’t even sent a message to Azriel through the bond. Until Azriel heard her shrieking in the back of his head. Cassian had been shot down with arrows while they were flying. They were being taken.
When Cassian awoke, Y/N was whimpering in the corner of the stone cell they were in. Her feet shackled to the floor; arms held above her by chains. He attempted to stand but found himself pinned to the wall behind him by the wings. Every little tug he made to free himself sent excruciating pain down his spine.
A masked man emerged from the shadows chuckling, holding a large blade. “We were really hoping for the Shadowsinger himself, but his mate and the High Lord’s general will work nicely until he arrives.”
“You can keep me,” Cassian begged, “You can do whatever you like with me. You can beat me, torture me, hell, you can even kill me if you want.” He turned his face towards Y/N, “But please,” his breath hitched, “Let. Her. Go.”
The masked man chuckled again, “We figured you would say that. Which is why we’ve decided she will be the perfect way to get you to give us the information we want. Tell me a secret of the High Lord’s, and she stays unharmed. Withhold information, or worse, lie to me, and I will tear her apart.” He walked towards Y/N’s shackled, limp body and lifted her off the ground by the waist, holding the blade to her neck. “So, general, what would you like to tell me first?”
Azriel and Rhysand had immediately winnowed home following Y/N’s panicked thoughts she had sent down the mating bond. They had searched and searched, attempting to figure out who could’ve taken them. Azriel had sent message after message down the bond in an attempt to hear something, anything from Y/N. All left unanswered. They had been searching for a week with no leads, and Azriel was exhausted from lack of sleep. Rhysand had suggested they pay a visit to their friends in the Court of Nightmares to see if they perhaps knew anything. When they were about to leave, Rhys squeezed his brother’s hand, “We will find them. We will not stop Azriel. I promise you.” Rhys could almost see tears forming in the Shadowsinger’s eyes.
It didn’t take them long when they showed up to the Court of Nightmares unannounced to realize that Keir was hiding something. His flustered, annoyed state led Azriel to believe he knew more than he was letting on. Rhysand was keeping Keir and the rest of the court occupied while Azriel searched under the mountain for something, anything. Azriel stood in a hall after searching, sending a message to Rhys that he had found nothing, when he felt a strange shiver inside him. It was as if someone was standing directly behind him, making the hair on the back of his neck stand straight up. He turned towards the stone wall next to him, and the feeling became intensified. His shadows had begun shooting around him, knocking into the wall. He pressed his hands against the cool stone, and when he pushed the largest stone, the wall retreated back to reveal a thick stone hallway. The strange feeling followed him as he went into the hall; Azriel sent a message to Rhys to get to where he was immediately without others following, having a feeling he would need backup.
When Azriel reached the room at the end of the hallway, he was speechless. In the corner laid a lifeless female body, covered in bruises and cuts and dried blood. Against the opposite wall sat Cassian, hanging by the pins holding his wings into the stone. He groaned and lifted his head, exclaiming when he saw his brother. Rhys ran in through the doorway behind Azriel, “We don’t have much time. I sent Keir on a wild goose chase but we need to…” he trailed off when he saw the girl in the corner. Azriel knelt down beside her, sweeping the hair away from her face, “Y/N,” he sobbed. “Y/N,” he cried again, “please. It’s me. We’re going home. I’m here now. I’m so sorry,” he whispered. She slowly opened her eyes, with the little strength she had left. Rhys helped Azriel remove her shackles, then carefully unpinned Cassian. “I’ll come back and deal with Keir and his court later,” Rhys stated, “Let’s get them to Madja.”
Madja had worked hard to mend Y/N’s wounds and heal Cassian’s wings. Both were resting, looking much better after bathing and receiving some elixirs to speed up their recovery. Azriel sat at Y/N’s bedside the entire time, never once letting go of her hand. When she had finally gone to sleep, Azriel left her for a moment, Mor had offered to keep an eye on her while he went to see Cassian. When he entered Cassian’s room, his brother immediately began to cry.
“I…” Cassian sobbed, “I am so sorry I couldn’t keep her safe brother…” Azriel stopped him, “You are not to blame for any of this, Cassian. I would’ve been in the same situation if the roles were reversed. Faebane takes everything out of you, there was no way to overcome that.” He smiled, “While I wish this hadn’t happened in the first place, I am glad she was with you. You helped keep her alive. You helped bring her home to me.” He hugged his brother and gave him a gentle pat on the back, avoiding the bandages on his wings.
When he returned to Y/N’s room, she had woken and was talking with Mor. He leaned against the doorway, watching as his beloved shared her experiences with his friend. “It seems someone would like your attention, Y/N. I’ve loved chatting with you, I’ll be back to check in soon,” Mor grinned as she stood from her chair. Azriel thanked her for staying while he was away. As soon as the door closed behind Mor, Azriel was at Y/N’s bedside. She was fully awake, somewhat rested. He took her in his arms gently and brushed his fingers through her hair. “I thought I lost you, sweet girl,” He frowned, “I have never been so afraid in my entire life.” She giggled, “That’s very serious, for someone who’s been alive 500 years.” He smiled at her, “I’m serious, dear. I do not want to exist in a world where you are not there. You are the light to my darkness, the wind to my wings.” He pressed a gentle kiss to her forehead, then another to her temple, another to her cheek, before hesitating and hovering over her lips. “I love you,” she hummed against his mouth, and he pressed his lips gently to hers.
The Hewn City - Azriel x Reader
Fanart by rosalynnart on DeviantArt
Summary: As a member of the Inner Circle, Rhys has requested you accompany them for their routine visit to the Court of Nightmares. You’re terrified - enter protective Azriel.
Warnings: crappy parents, brief mentions of violence
Word Count: 5,000
A/N: I love Azriel, that’s all. Requests are still open, and my request guidelines are linked on my masterlist. I hope you enjoy, please consider liking/following and all those things! :)
You hated the Court of Nightmares.
It was the place you’d been born and raised, tormented by your greedy parents and their fake friends. It hadn’t taken long for you to become disillusioned and disgusted by life in the Hewn City; you hated the way everyone was watched and judged, the way any and all relationships could be sabotaged in a matter of seconds all for a little bit of power.
You ran away when you turned 18, right as the War began. Everyone important (including your parents) was preoccupied with funding and logistics, and so no one chased after you. You weren’t surprised, you hadn’t expected them to send a cavalry after you. Of course you were a little hurt by their lack of interest in you, but it only reminded you why you were leaving in the first place.
You walked for days with hardly any food or water, until you were so exhausted you thought you might collapse in the woods and die. So be it, you had thought, I’d prefer death to living in that Cauldron-forsaken city, anyways.
It was pure luck that you stumbled upon a camp of Night Court soldiers, all of whom were shocked by the appearance of your starving, disheveled self. None of them had jumped to help you, save for one Illyrian soldier with long hair and bright red siphons. He’d caught you as you all but collapsed onto him, carrying you to the healers’ tent and then to his own, where he fed you a really disgusting, genuinely awful stew.
“At least it’s warm,” he said with a shrug, handing you a bowl of steaming grayish slop.
You frowned, prodding a particularly chunky bit with your spoon. “What’s this supposed to be?” you asked, pointing to one of the lumps.
“Rabbit? Maybe deer?” he tried. “I have no idea, I’ve stopped asking.” You sighed, shaking your head as you brought the spoon to your mouth.
And that was how you met Cassian. Though it took all your effort not to throw up whatever it was he’d given you, you were still grateful for the meal, learning a little while later he’d given you his only dinner ration for that night. You were being honest when you told him that was the kindest thing anyone had ever done for you.
Cassian convinced his commander to let you stay with the legion. You were more than happy to help the healers tend to the many wounded, often collecting herbs for them since they had very little time to do so.
After a few months you began to befriend the seemingly brute soldiers, all of whom were actually quite funny and caring in their own way. You had assumed wrongly that they were only fighting out of obligation to the Night Court - on the contrary, many of them genuinely cared about freeing the humans, and were willing to fight and die for such a cause.
You began helping them advocate for themselves, acting as a messenger between them and their superiors whenever they needed anything. They’d been moved when you convinced the commander to get them waterproof bedding. You were just happy to help your new friends.
As the war progressed your legion became quite well known for its strength and enthusiasm in battle. Eventually, they caught the attention of the High Lord, who was eager to know how your commander kept them all so motivated. Your commander never told you that in his response, he attributed the soldiers’ high morale to you.
You didn’t find out about it until the High Lord himself summoned you to his encampment, wanting to meet you for himself.
“Y/N, is it?” he asked. You gulped and nodded, hating the way all the High Lord’s advisors were just staring at you.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you,” he said, walking over to you and clasping your hand. “You’ve made quite a name for yourself.”
“Oh, not really,” you replied dismissively.
“On the contrary, your commander attributed most of your legion’s success to you,” the High Lord said. Your eyes widened.
“He did?” you asked meekly.
“Yes, he did.” The High Lord led you over to the large table in the middle of the tent, covered in various maps and reports. You quickly recognized the different markings noting the enemy’s various armies in relation to your own.
“Their reinforcements are closer than I thought they were,” you said, pointing to an enemy group only half a day’s travel away from the front lines.
“Straight to the point, eh?” he chucked. You shrugged.
“Their proximity is worrying since our own reinforcements are two days away,” he continued. “I’m hoping my son will be able to urge them faster.”
“Your son?” you inquired. The High Lord nodded.
“My son Rhysand is the commander of this legion,” he said, pointing to one of the markers on the map. “He does a good job, though his troops are not as eager to fight as yours are.”
“Our soldiers want to see the humans freed,” you said. “Many of them have told me they would willingly die to win this war. I believe that has helped them stay strong when the fighting gets rough.”
“Very admirable of them,” the High Lord said thoughtfully. “I wish all our troops thought similarly.”
You nodded, still looking down at the table. “This map is very impressive, sir.”
“Thank you,” he replied. “It’s the most accurate information we have.”
“How often do you update it?” you asked, looking up at him.
“We track the enemy’s movements down to the hour. Every shift, every change is reflected here.”
“Down to the hour?” you exclaimed, eyes wide. “How do you accomplish such a thing?”
“You’d have to ask him,” the High Lord replied, gesturing behind you.
You turned around, eyes landing on an Illyrian man clad in black leather. His hair was shorter than Cassian’s, wielding blue siphons instead of red. The biggest difference between the two, however, were the dark shadows that circled around him slowly. Your cheeks flushed as his gaze met yours, hazel eyes piercing. You smiled and gave him a small wave, but his face remained the same.
“That’s Azriel, the official shadowsinger of the Night Court,” explained the High Lord. You nodded slowly, turning back towards the table.
“Go introduce yourself, if you’d like,” he added. “He’s quiet, but perhaps he’ll enjoy some conversation.”
“Yes sir,” you said with a nod, looking again at the shadowsinger and walking in his direction, pushing through the swarm of advisors and generals.
“Hello,” you said softly as you stopped in front of him, craning your neck upwards a bit to meet his eyes. “I’m Y/N.” His eyes widened as he looked down at you.
You bit your lip nervously and offered him your hand, though he kept his clasped firmly behind his back. You dropped your arm awkwardly, grabbing at the bottom of your shirt.
“I’m from the western legion,” you added, trying to make conversation. His eyes softened somewhat at that.
“Do you know a Cassian?” he asked quietly, voice deep and rumbling.
“Yes!” you replied brightly, trying to ignore the way your stomach had flip-flopped when he spoke. “He was the one who rescued me, actually, and convinced our commander to let me stay. He’s a close friend of mine.”
“Rescue?” he inquired. You nodded, not really wanting to elaborate.
“Well, any friend of Cassian’s a friend of mine,” he said, giving you a small smile. “I’m Azriel.”
“It’s nice to meet you, Azriel,” you said with a grin.
“It’s nice to meet you too, Y/N.”
You met Rhysand a little while after as he’d been giving a report to his father. When you returned to your legion and asked Cassian about both of them, he told you the story of how they’d met and became friends. You were shocked by all the horrors they’d endured, and a little mad at the High Lord for separating them.
“We probably could’ve won this war months ago if he let you all fight together,” you huffed, crossing your arms over your chest.
“Damn right, Y/N,” Cassian replied.
When the war ended, you were there to watch their reunion. You’d become a little emotional at the sight of them together, all smiling brighter than you’d ever seen before (even Azriel). You had tried to hide your teary eyes from them, only to start bawling when they grabbed you and pulled you into the group hug.
Rhysand had left soon after for the Court of Nightmares with his father. You’d urged Cassian and Azriel to go with him, insisting they needed some time to catch up with each other. You had opted to stay with the soldiers, helping them sort through their belongings and figure out where to go next. Like you, not all of them wanted to return to where they were from. You’d ended up in a small Illyrian camp with several of the soldiers from your legion, where you helped them settle in and begin navigating the ins and outs of running what was essentially a small town.
The next time you saw Rhysand, he was High Lord.
With his father dead, Rhysand was appointing a new Inner Circle with different values and morals than the one before it. He had asked you to be his advisor for social affairs, and you’d very emotionally accepted (“Do you cry at everything?” he teased, wrapping you in a hug as you nodded dramatically).
You were thrilled to learn Cassian and Azriel were also a part of the Inner Circle, as well as Rhysand’s cousin Morrigan and friend Amren. You were thrilled to have female friends for the first time in your entire life.
You also loved your job. As social advisor, you helped the various camps and smaller settlements throughout the court communicate with the High Lord, negotiating financial agreements and the like. It also meant you got to visit all your old friends, many of whom were starting families and working to change social standards in their towns.
The only part you did not like were the mandatory visits to the Hewn City once every few months, just to make sure everything there was running smoothly. For the many years you’d been working for Rhysand you’d managed to get out of every single visit, claiming you had scheduled trips to check up on camps and emergency meetings with different war-lords.
You had, however, run out of excuses.
“Y/N, I cannot allow you to miss another one of these trips,” Rhysand said sternly over breakfast. You glared pointedly at the plate of eggs in front of you, refusing to make eye contact with Rhys. Azriel and Cassian were sitting silently at the table, watching the two of you argue.
“Don’t you think,” you seethed, “that after years of trying to avoid this, I might have some reason not to go?”
“All of us have reasons not to go,” Rhysand said plainly. “No one enjoys these visits, but they’re mandatory. And you’re the only member of the Inner Circle who’s never visited. People have started talking.”
“Let them talk,” you scoffed, stuffing a forkful of eggs in your mouth.
“I don’t want to let them talk,” Rhys countered. “I don’t like them calling members of my Inner Circle weak, or negligent, or cowardly.”
“Well, I don’t care what they think of me,” you dismissed with a wave of your hand. “Amren hasn’t gone on the last few trips, either. I hope you’re planning on having this conversation with her as well.”
“First of all, I’d be a damn fool to try and tell Amren what to do,” Rhys stated, Cassian and Azriel nodding in agreement. “Second, she’s been to the Court of Nightmares before. Like I said, you’re the only one who hasn’t gone.”
You sat in silence, staring blankly in front of you. Rhys sighed.
“Y/N, I’m going to have to remove you from the Inner Circle if you don’t make this next trip,” he said finally. Your head snapped up, staring at him with wide eyes.
“You wouldn’t,” you hissed.
“Rhys,” Azriel warned softly, glancing between the two of you.
“I won’t have anyone thinking my Inner Circle is weak,” Rhys said, throwing his hands up. “I don’t want to remove you, but don’t think I won’t do it.”
You sat back in your chair in defeat, thoughts of your childhood and parents racing through your mind. Your breaths became faster, the three Illyrians at the table looked at you in concern.
“Y/N-” Cassian started, but you stood up abruptly, hoping they wouldn’t notice the tears forming in your eyes.
“Fine,” you choked. “Fuck you, Rhys.” You stormed out of the room, racing up the stairs, leaving the three of them staring after you in alarmed confusion.
You didn’t talk to anyone until the day of the trip, when you met them downstairs to leave. You were wearing a tight black dress that draped down to the floor, hair and makeup done nicely. You would be able to fit in without calling too much attention to yourself.
“Hi,” Rhysand started hopefully, but you just stared at the ground in front of you, refusing to acknowledge him. He sighed.
“I’m sure you know already, but you’ll have to play the part when we get there. Acting all cunning and ruthless, bowing to me, those sorts of things.”
“I’ll behave,” you replied numbly. Azriel moved next to you, grabbing your hand as you prepared to winnow. You didn’t miss the slight rub of his thumb against the back of your hand, the slight squeeze as you closed your eyes.
When you opened them, you were standing in a dimly lit room, stone walls covered in black banners, no windows to be seen. You breathed heavily, hoping Azriel hadn’t noticed how much your hands were shaking.
“Mor will send for us when the Court’s assembled in the throne area,” Rhysand said, taking a seat in a large plush chair.
“Y/N are you alright?” Cassian asked, concern evident in his voice. You hadn’t once looked up from your feet.
You shook your head, no you were not alright. In fact, you were far from alright, seeing as you were back in the one place you’d never wanted to return to.
You stiffened as Azriel wrapped his arm behind you, rubbing your shoulder comfortingly. You relaxed immediately, leaning into his side.
The room remained silent for a few minutes, Azriel trying his best to comfort you. You were almost sad when he pulled away as Mor walked into the room. You could’ve stayed nestled against him for hours.
“They’re ready for us,” Mor started. “Y/N, your parents are waiting outside. They want to talk to you.”
You felt Azriel tense up next to you as Rhys and Cass looked at you with wide eyes. You felt like breaking something, rage quickly replacing your fear. How dare they want to speak with you, after letting you walk out of their lives into a war?
“I’m going to wring their necks,” you muttered, stalking past Mor with Azriel following closely behind you. You didn’t need her to lead you to the throne room, you knew well enough where everything was in this damned city yourself.
You kept your eyes focused in front of you as you walked through the doorway, shoulders pushed back, features neutral. You ignored the figures waiting by the wall, ignored the calls of your name.
“You filthy runaway!” you heard your mother shriek from behind you. You ground your teeth, refusing to acknowledge her. Azriel caught up to you within a few strides, moving beside you as you continued forward.
“I didn’t know you had family here,” he said, eyes fixed forward just as yours were. Everything was a careful performance here.
“I was born here,” you said coldly. Azriel was silent next to you.
“I had no idea,” he replied finally.
“I never told anyone.”. The entrance to the throne room was now in sight. You could sense Cassian coming up behind you, moving to flank your other side.
“I’m sorry,” Azriel added. He glanced at you, grabbing your hand and squeezing it before dropping it quickly. “I would’ve argued with Rhys about you coming if I had known.”
“I know you would’ve,” you said, watching him adopt the emotionless soldier persona once again. “Thank you.”
The three of you entered the throne room together, walking in sync past the crowds of Hewn City residents to the opposite wall. They fell silent as you approached. It almost made you smile, them at least pretending to respect you for the first time ever. You almost hoped someone would dare to say something out of line, just to see what Rhys and Cassian and Azriel might do. At the same time, you wanted to curl up into a ball in your bed and never see anyone again. Your confidence, as convincing as it was, was still an act.
You stood between them, waiting for Rhys to enter. You watched Mor saunter past her parents, giving them a taunting smirk. Maybe one day you’d be able to do the same.
You straightened as Rhys walked in behind her, purple eyes gleaming despite the terrible lighting of Hewn City.
“Your High Lord, ladies and gentlemen,” Mor announced, dropping to one knee as he sauntered into the room. You did the same, admiring the way Rhys emanated power and control. A quick glance to your left and you made brief eye contact with Azriel, whose muscular thighs were only accentuated by his kneeling. Your eyes widened, gulping as you looked back towards Rhys.
“My subjects,” he drawled with a grin, making his way up to the throne and sitting down casually. He scanned the room for a moment, then nodded. “Rise.”
You stood up slowly, watching Mor’s father step forward to deliver his report on city happenings. You weren’t really paying attention, choosing instead to let your gaze wander over to Azriel again. He was wearing all of his siphons, wings folded behind his back neatly. He looked somewhat relaxed, though his hands were positioned to draw his weapons if needed.
You loved Az’s hands, the hands he had tried to hide from you for months. When you finally asked him why he hid his scars, he’d reluctantly told you about his childhood. He’d been surprised when your reaction was not one of pity, but rather one of immense anger. How dare anyone do that to him? Azriel, who was so selfless and giving, did not deserve such pain.
“You’re staring,” Az muttered, a small smirk on his face.
“Am not,” you replied with a glare, fixing your eyes in front of you as your face heated up.
“Are too,” he teased. You rolled your eyes, hoping he didn’t notice the blush tinging your cheeks.
Kier was just finishing up his dull speech. Rhys looked beyond bored, though you knew it was all just a front. He would probably spend hours reviewing whatever information Kier had told him when you returned home.
“My Lord,” Mor’s father drawled. “I noticed the sixth member of your Inner Circle has joined you today.”
You stiffened as the whole room glanced in your direction.
“Y/N?” Rhys said, gesturing to you. You took a step forward and bowed, quickly returning to your place between Az and Cass.
“Welcome home, Y/N,” Kier said, a twisted grin on his face. “We missed you.”
“I’m sure,” you replied cooly, voice echoing off the stone walls. You picked out your parents rather quickly in the crowd, almost shuddering at the way they were glaring at you. You raised your eyebrows, taunting them to say something. They remained silent.
“If there is nothing more to discuss, I’ll be going now,” Rhys announced, pushing himself up from his seat and making his way towards the door. “Thank you for this, truly. You’re all dismissed.”
You waited until him and Mor had left to follow, making your way through the crowd with Azriel and Cassian on your heels. You failed to see your mother stalking towards you as you approached the doorway, failed to see her until she was right beside you. She grabbed your shoulder, stopping you in your tracks and turning you to face her forcefully.
Your heart skidded to a stop, face palling at the furious look on her face.
“You ungrateful child,” she hissed, nails digging into the skin on your shoulder.
“Let go of me,” you whispered. “Let go.” The whole room had stopped to watch the two of you.
“How dare you align yourself with him,” she screeched. You pulled away from her, heart pounding as she continued moving towards you.
“You’re pathetic,” you spat defensively, wanting nothing more than to push her away from you. She only cackled, eyes blazing as she lunged at you.
You gritted your teeth, bracing yourself for impact, but a leather-clad arm reached out from beside you before she could reach you.
Azriel, who you’d almost forgotten was with you, had grabbed your mother mid-air, pinning her to his side as she struggled in his grip.
He looked more furious than you’d ever seen him, a rarity for the shadowsinger who hid his emotions like secrets. His massive wings were unfurled, jaw clenched as he looked down at her like she was a criminal Rhys had asked him to torture. You almost smiled at how fearful she looked as she glanced up at him, powerless.
“If you touch her,” he said, his voice a deadly whisper, “I will gut you, and throw you off the mountain again and again until you stop screaming.”
Her face blanched, looking around nervously as she tried to get away. Azriel did not let her budge.
“Let me go,” she asked, voice shaking. “Please, let-”
“Give me one reason why I shouldn’t break every bone in your body right here in front of everyone,” he said, voice calm despite the rage so clear on his face.
“Please,” she begged again. “Please.”
He looked back at you and you nodded, watching as he threw her to the ground in front of you. She let out a shaky breath, carefully drawing herself up from the floor…
She was not expecting your punch, eyes widening as your fist connected with the side of your face. Neither was Azriel, if his look of pleasant shock was anything to go by. You admired the way her body crumpled back onto the ground, grinned openly at the frightened look she gave you.
“I hope you die a painful death,” you said, almost cheerily. You turned, seeking out your father in the crowd and pointing to him. “You too,” you shouted, watching as he paled.
You turned on your heel and stalked out of the room, giving Mor a thumbs up as you passed her in the doorway. She gave you a small smile and an approving nod.
You waited until Rhys winnowed you all back to Velaris to let yourself relax, your shoulders slumping as you collapsed into a chair. You were exhausted.
“I’m fucking starving,” Cassian grumbled, lumbering out of the room just as quickly as you arrived. You smiled a bit, opening your eyes to see Rhys watching you intently.
“Y/N,” he started, but you raised a hand to silence him.
“I don’t want you to say anything,” you said flatly.
“I had no idea,” he continued anyway. “I would have let you stay…”
“What’s done is done,” you sighed. “Besides, if I hadn’t gone I never would’ve gotten to punch the shit out of my mom.” He chuckled and you gave him a sick grin.
“I can arrange to have Azriel torture them, if you’d like,” Rhys offered, the same option he’d given Mor when she’d returned to the Court of Nightmares. Azriel nodded earnestly, as if he’d be happy to do it.
“Thanks, but I’d like to do it myself, when the time is right,” you replied. The two of them nodded in understanding. Rhys gave you a small smile and disappeared from view, probably to join Cassian.
Azriel walked over towards you carefully, sitting down in a chair next to yours. He reached his hand out, slowly brushing a stray hair out of your face. You hummed and leaned into his touch, so soft and caring despite the scars.
“I wasn’t expecting you to punch her,” he said quietly. You chucked.
“I wasn’t either, but I’m glad I did,” you replied, opening your eyes and finding his hazel ones gazing at you fondly.
“You’re staring,” you teased lightly, quoting him. He smiled but didn’t look away. You blushed, biting your lip and looking down at your lap.
“Thank you for keeping her away from me,” you almost whispered. “I don’t know what I would’ve done had she actually, you know…” You trailed off, remembering the fear you had felt when she grabbed at you. “It was like I was frozen, I couldn’t move.”
“I think I would’ve actually killed her if she had gotten to you,” he said. You glanced up at him, his face carefully neutral as he thought about his words. “I was just...so mad at her, for calling you filthy and ungrateful, for insulting you in front of everyone.” He met your gaze and his face softened.
“Az,” you said gently, reaching out and gently taking his hands in your own.
“I’m sorry if it was out of line-”
“No,” you interrupted, “no, thank you for doing it. It gave me enough time to remember how little I care about her opinion of me.”
“She still shouldn’t call you such things,” he said, jaw clenching. “You’re one of the bravest people I know, running away from home and joining an Illyrian war camp, of all places.” You laughed, giving his hands a small squeeze.
“That place wasn’t home,” you said with a shake of your head. “That’s why I ran away, I wanted to find a place where people actually cared about me.”
“Did you?” he asked softly, eyes darting nervously between your face and your hands, still intertwined with his.
“Yes,” you whispered, heart surging as he smiled at you.
“You don’t have to go back, ever,” he said, looking at you intently. “I won’t let him force you again. I promise.”
“Thank you, Az,” you said gratefully.
“And I swear,” he continued, “if either of your parents steps one toe out of line I’ll make them regret every minute of their lives.” You grinned.
“Well, if that happens let me know,” you said, “I wouldn’t want to miss any of the fun.”
He laughed then, truly laughed, scooting his chair closer to yours.
“I won’t let anyone touch you,” he murmured, your heart almost stopping as he leaned forward and pressed his forehead against yours.
“Az,” you breathed, stomach fluttering.
“Y/N,” he replied, voice husky with some emotion that made your head swirl.
“Az,” you giggled, sticking your tongue out, licking the tip of his nose.
His eyes widened, a smile spreading across his face. “Gross,” he joked, bringing a hand up to cup your cheek. His eyes became serious, searching your face for any hesitation.
You leaned forward, closing your eyes as you pressed your lips against his. You could’ve sworn you felt his heart leap as he began to kiss you back, reaching around you to pull your body onto his lap. You couldn’t ignore the sparks of joy you felt as his hands roamed your back, nose pressed against your cheek as his lips molded against yours again and again.
You were the first one to pull away, needing air, heart melting as you opened your eyes and saw Azriel watching you with such obvious adoration. You admired the small smile on his face, the flush of his cheeks and his tousled hair, the quickened rising and falling of his chest…
And then something clicked, something deep inside you, and your eyes widened with immediate realization.
“It’s...it’s you,” you gasped, overcome with emotion. He gulped and nodded, looking at you hopefully.
“Yes,” he breathed. “Yes.” He paused, panting heavily. “Is that...okay?” he asked, looking more nervous than you’d ever seen him before.
“It’s perfect,” you choked out, grabbing his face and pulling him in again. He groaned, your stomach doing flip flops as his hands came up to cradle the back of your head. He tucked his thumbs under your ears, claiming your mouth as his own.
“How...how long have you known?” you asked between kisses, your hands exploring the firm expanse of his chest.
“Since the first day I met you,” he mumbled against your lips, breathing heavily as you pulled back again.
“You’ve known for that long?” you asked incredulously, eyes wide. He nodded, grinning like he was the happiest man alive. “And you still waited for me?” You were touched.
“I would’ve waited until the end of time for you,” he said, ducking his head down and nuzzling your neck with his nose. “Though, I will say, it took you forever to realize.”
You swatted his shoulder playfully, resting your chin on the top of his head and closing your eyes. “I’ll cook dinner tonight, okay?” you said softly. You felt his whole body tense.
“Are...are you sure?” he asked thickly, as if you still might reject the mating bond.
But how could you ever think of such a thing, when you were sitting in the lap of the most protecting and caring person you’d ever met?
“I’m positive,” you murmured, tilting his head upwards and pressing a kiss to his forehead.
“Well in that case, I’m quite fond of chicken,” he teased.
“You’ll get whatever I feel like making,” you huffed, relishing in the way his whole body vibrated as he laughed.
“And I will happily eat whatever that is,” he replied lovingly.
“Even toast?” you asked.
“Even toast,” he grinned, capturing your lips in another kiss.
Azriel: Did something happen that I, as your chaperone should know about?
Cassian after making out with Nesta:
“You knew the Valkyries personally?”
Gwyn let out a high-pitched noise that was nothing but pure excitement. Azriel, on the other side of the ring with the rest of the priestesses, half-turned at the sound, brows high.