Lorian’s youth. He was more naive. Reckless. Susceptible on tease. Autumnal reign was much more easygoing than winter one. The fey were still dark… but more wild and dangerous than cruel and sadistic. Time [ and dark magic ] changes everything… Even bathing in dark power, he could remember the free autumnal prince he once was, who he can hate… but long for it, equally.

 

The autumn attire of Dal’coler was beaming with lights, carried by hundreds of fey. Alit lanterns’ color indicated what they planned for the night. Love, darkness and forbidden joys – it brimmed in their veins, washing over their minds with desire for the new. On the longest night, all were equal and all could wildly take from all privileges that was coming with that fact.

The High King, Marnsul Dal, the autumnal lord of Dal’coler, had no power that day. Other fey though were aware, very well, that he will return on the throne, and his power still lingered in him, untouched. No one would dethrone him, no one would dare.

Laughters were piercing the air, and screams, but not pained ones. The High Fae touched nature and nature responded, filling them with the ichor of the night. Making them reckless, even more dangerous and wilder than woods in the deep pitch-black darkness.

Prince Lorian Ain’Dal’s eyes were taking all of it in, dark holes, which held even deeper shadows. But two other fey who accompanied him, didn’t see the darkness, didn’t see the black wells. They could recognize the sparks of intrigued interest in them, burning with forbidden fire.

He was the youngest of them all. And most impatient, most filled with fire. And most reckless, foolish youth brimming in his veins. That was one of the reasons why they liked him so much. No one ever could be bored in his company.

“Lorian can’t wait to see that nymph again” chuckled lord Varien, his long fingers running through his thick reddish hair. The young prince looked at him with blank sternness, which Varien knew was only a studied pose.

“Is she really that beautiful? Worthy of royal attention?” teased Sirnal, enjoying Lorian’s stormy expression.

“After all, today, we are all equal,” added Varien. “And fires burn high tonight.”

Lorian’s face alit with a dark, ironic smirk.

“Like any of you cared about equality of positions, romancing lower fey, tracking unsuspecting humans in the woods.”

“Like you cared for that too” grinned Varien, joyfully. “I only showed you possibilities, your highness. You love to fuck lower fey. They can be so fiery.”

Oh, Lorian knew. He knew so well. Pleasures of autumnal reign were countless. He was born in the rusty season, caused by the almost cordial nature of his father. Stoic in its mute darkness, the least violent reigns in the whole history of the fairy kind.

The fey were enjjoying safety given by him, adapting to it. For Lorian though – partially losing something.

For Lorian, power and position were not a goal, but were pleasant and were allowing him to live how he wants. He never wondered how it would be to not have it. He was spoiled, but smart enough to not pull too far.

“You should commit a thief’s hunt on her. You can go against all what your father thinks about good pleasure… openly” whispered Sirnal, viciously. “He has no power over you. Not today. Why to hide, when you can have her to the sound of your court’s approval.”

Lorian’s expression showed more interest. It could be felt how his dark aura pulses around him, when he weighed the options.

“You are both such a clever fools” he eventually said, his shadows brimming around him in anticipation. It was an old solstice custom. If two fey were fond of each other, one of them could kidnap the other, and carry them in the darkness, with an applause of the celebrating High Fae.

And on nights like this, old customs were tempting to try.

“You want her, Lorian. Drag her into the woods.”

“And she wants you too. For me though, she would better choose, if she wanted me. You have skill with shadows, but I am a natural born lover. She would prefer me, if she ever tried my charm.”

Varien was sure that this would lit his royal friend up. That it will make him steal his solstice bride.

When Lorian’s black eyes sparked with something aflame-like, they both knew that their teasing worked on him. Lorian walked gracefully into the candle-lit darkness, and his friends followed him, surrounded by his deep enchantment, intensified by the awakening desire.

The night’s scent filled him in, a mix of decay and rebirth, of sleep and awake. His eyes searched for Mosla, the wood nymph, a beautiful and most of all clever lower fey, with whom he would lay the first day of their meet, if she was not a servant of his father. She was sure the king will know and Lorian was aware that she might have a lot of right. Marnsul had one huge disadvantage. He was somehow obseesed with pregnancy. And Lorian liked to seduce women. None of them got pregnant.

He seduced men too, but for obvious reason, they weren’t as problematic for Marnsul as women.

More so, Mosla impressed him, everything in her impressed him, and he could give her so much fire. He could give her so much night.

The three lords spotted Mosla putting the wreaths on the water. Her black hair tangled in braids, her green mossy eyes holding secrets of the moon and stars.

“Thief’s hunt!” howled Sirnal. The fey around immediately turned their hungry faces in his direction.

“A hunter comes for his bride!” laughed Varien. The High and Lesser Fae started to whisper, the air between them became warm from amassing auras.

Lorian stepped from darkness in the company of shadows, which were warmed up by his inner fire. Making the air even more dense around him.

Mosla looked at him and he immediately felt her power, light like breezy spring morning. She laughed, dark dark sound filled with temptation.

“Long way you treaded, my lord” her gaze locked on his. Fae were easily ignited and easily tempted. Sexual pleasure was for Lorian as natural as breathing.

“Thief’s hunt. The thief’s hunt” started to whisper the fey, eager to see the solstice bride losing her freedom. Rarely anyone kept to this custom, more so a royal son. It was as old as time, older than all autumnal kings, older than winter lords, reaching into the core of spring.

Lorian’s eyes drilled holes in Mosla’s soul. She felt his intensity, he was always even too intense. Yet she wanted that, wanted to lay with him in the leaves and feel him. She wanted to embrace his waist with her legs and push him deep inside.

She wanted to tear his shirt off, and own him. Allow his aura to swallow her. And he felt the same.

Let them all hear her as she lets him in.

“Bring the binds! Bind their hands, so none of them could run!” Varien beamed as the master of the ceremony. Lorian even thought that a little too much. He was in his environment.

“No,” whispered Lorian with a mysterious smile. Mosla looked at him, with dark amusement, like wanting to know what he planned. “No,” he said louder. “No vines. I can bind her myself.”

That made all fey brim with urgency and impatience. Of course, the shadow prince had a way to steal his bride and not let her escape. And his own shadows could bind them without losing ability to touch each other deeply, until the hunt is over.

“That is cheating, my lord” her smile deep like her spells, her expression amused. “Why should only you be able to bind me, so easily being able to unbind yourself?”

“Because it’s me who steals you” he purred and she laughed, eagerly, wildly, like a real solstice bride.

“Do it then” she teased. “A young prince needs to earn his bride.”

“I will do much more. And you as well… you will do so much more…” His tone was tempting and seductive and she didn’t regret anymore that he made her the center of attention of a whole gathering.

And he stole her.

He really did.

To the crispy murmur of the leaves and creaking of the branches under the sharp autumn sky.

He would have killed anyone who would try to stop him now.

And he was carefree enough to not see the eyes of the High Fae, who he knew well enough, and who was looking at him with badly concealed hatred.

2 Replies to “In the Autumnal Grove – I”

  1. As always, another beautifully written chapter. I like reading these pieces with scenes from the characters’ pasts. 🥰
    I think Mosla was his first love? hehe 😊

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