Growing Dizyntk (8)
Chapter 1

Caution: This Science Fiction Sex Story contains strong sexual content, including Ma/Fa, mt/ft, ft/ft, Consensual, Romantic, Science Fiction, First,

Desc: Science Fiction Sex Story: Chapter 1 - Ariarisha Zerleen has finally come of age. Her dearest friend has moved in with her, but Lilavasi suggests that Aria needs something else as well. Veenalara may finally get what she wants. Virathea starts her new job, and a strange pair of twins get involved with the Royal Guard. Basically several story threads getting tied together.

Virathea Tzilank squirmed in her chair as she filled out her daily reports. She hated paperwork. Unfortunately that was a large part of her new job. She knew this when she accepted it but she had agreed to it because it was an important position and because Queen Kiasyphia had personally asked her to. In addition to General Kristakala and Admiral Jedanaran, there were two assistant commanders in both the Sapphire Royal Guard ground forces and space forces. It was these four assistant officers who really ran the affairs of the Guard. Of those who ran the ground forces, one was in charge of the warriors that protected the Palace grounds and the other was in command of the bodyguard units that protected the various members of the Royal Family. While the former commanded more troops, the latter was a slightly more prestigious position.

It was the bodyguard units which Virathea had been put in charge of. She would have had it no other way since it was as a bodyguard that she had served for the past several cyankas. She had grown to love her previous charges, Princess Feyalisa's family, during her cyankas as the head of their protection detail. They were as precious to her as her own family. In fact, family was precisely how Feyalisa and her mating group viewed Virathea even if Virathea herself sometimes had a hard time with that. It was not that she did not have the same feelings, she did, it was just that her training told her that she needed to keep an emotional distance between herself and her charges in order to do her job properly. Whether she still believed this or not was a debatable point. Either way, she was always happy to see Feyalisa and smiled as her Princess walked into her office.

Feyalisa looked quite different now than she had the first time Virathea had seen her. Virathea could easily remember Feyalisa from that time. The handmade clothes that just barely covered her body, the waist length mane of dark red hair that seemed almost wild even though it was well kept and the haughty, fearless expression she gave a group of ten warriors pointing weapons at her even though she had been completely unarmed were all striking memories for Virathea. In spite of the circumstances she had been living in for several cyankas at that point, she had still looked every inch the proud scion of the Zerleen Royal House. That was one of the few things that had not changed over the cyankas. Virathea looked Feyalisa over briefly as she entered the room. The clothing she was currently wearing, while basically simple, was still much more refined than what she was wearing back then. Her hair was still the beautiful dark red color it had always been but it was now trimmed to a more manageable length, just to the middle of her back, and styled in a refined manner. Her expression was the most changed, Virathea thought. Now she was giving a look of friendly familiarity to the colonel; much different than the one she had flashed at the young captain Virathea had been five cyankas ago.

Virathea began to stand as her Princess entered, but Feyalisa waved her back to her seat. She finished walking to the front of Virathea's desk and casually sat down in the chair located there.

"You look like you have acclimated to your new job, or perhaps not." Feyalisa said teasingly.

Virathea growled lightly and shook her head. "I hate paperwork. That is all this job is. Reports, requests, reviews, schedules, paperwork, paperwork and more paperwork!"

Feya laughed at Virathea's frustration. "Welcome to my world, Colonel."

Virathea sighed. "Apologies for venting my frustrations in your presence, Your Highness."

"It is perfectly alright, Virathea." Feya responded.

"May I do something for you, Your Highness?" Virathea asked.

Feyalisa shook her head. "I merely stopped by to see you. You have been back for six months now and I rarely get to talk to you."

Virathea nodded a bit. Feyalisa had always loved chatting with her when she was on duty. Not that Virathea minded talking to her and it always made protecting your charge easier if they got along with you, but now.

"Apologies, Your Highness. It is just that..." Virathea said while indicating the inbox full of papers on her desk.

"It's not you fault." Feyalisa chuckled. "And I know that Tikashira is in charge of my security now, not you. I like her well enough, but you were there for so long that I do not think I shall ever tire of coming to you for a casual chat."

Virathea nodded in acquiescence to Feyalisa's request. The two of them would spend the next hour talking about various things including how the Guard was recovering its strength and how their respective families were doing, particularly Ariarisha. Even though it would put her behind in her work, Virathea really did not mind this distraction. She hoped to lead the Royal Guard one day and Feyalisa would most likely be Queen when that happened. Therefore it was in Virathea's interests to maintain the relationship she had developed with Feyalisa. Besides that, she thought as she leaned back and laughed with Feyalisa over a comment, she truly loved spending personal times like this with her.

Velakari was sitting comfortably in her stateroom on the small starship she was aboard. She had her hands lightly clasped together and her eyes were closed as she lightly hummed a pleasant tune to herself. The vessel she was on was a transport belonging to House Zerleen. As an experienced Priestess of the Jade Order, Velakari could easily have requisitioned one of their ships for this trip. Since she was going to the planet of Lilac, which was jointly run by all the Orders as a monastery planet, on an official trip, she would also have been justified in doing so. She much preferred the ships of her bonded mate's House however. They were, generally speaking, far more comfortable than the average transports operated by the Orders. Velakari was not so senior that she could have requested one of the nicer transports owned by her Order. These were reserved for the members of the Order's Ruling Council; the three highest members on each planet, the Head of the Order and her assistants. Even the smallest and most mundane transports belonging to the Royal Family however were richly accoutered and very comfortable. Velakari, Priestess though she was, enjoyed comfortable travel as much as the next dizyntk. So, whenever she traveled, she always used one of House Zerleen's ships.

The ship she currently was on was, as a matter of fact, the smallest passenger starship that the Royal Family owned and the only one that Velakari used for things like this. It had a crew of eight and accommodations for four passengers in the comfort that a member of royalty would expect. It was also an older ship and had been on the verge of being sold off when Velakari began to use it on a regular basis. She had been somewhat embarrassed when, after Queen Kiasyphia had heard that she enjoyed using the small ship when on business for her Order, the Queen ordered a complete refit of the old vessel. Velakari had bashfully told her that this was not necessary, but Kiasyphia would not hear of it. She insisted that, as her granddaughter's bonded mate, she was a member of her family and that she deserved the same comforts as on any of the larger transports.

The ship had even been renamed. Originally it was called "Little Sprinter." This had been due to its small size and, at the time of its purchase some thirty cyankas previously, relatively high speed. Its new name was "Jade Sprinter." referring to the Order of its most frequent user, much to Velakari's delight. Thanks to the refit, which included new engines and star drive, it was still a fast ship; the fastest transport owned by House Zerleen in fact. This had engendered its retention of the "Sprinter" part of its name.

Velakari had not been to Lilac in almost a cyanka and the reason for her visit this time was the reverse of the last. Last time she had brought a Priestess here to finish her training. Now she was coming back to pick her up, just as she had promised she would do. She opened her eyes as the ship's Captain announced that they were four minutes from entering Lilac's atmosphere. She fastened the restraints on her chair in preparation for this. Normally she would not really need to do this. Landing on most inhabited planets was a simple procedure. It was wise to keep one's seat but restraints were not necessary.

Unfortunately, Lilac was not like most planets. Lilac did not primarily orbit the sun of its star system as all the other planets inhabited by the Dizyntk did. Instead it was a tidally locked satellite of a gas giant located at the outer edge of the system's habitable zone. On top of this, its atmosphere was just eleven percent oxygen. This made it feel as if one was at 5000 meters even while at sea level on the planet. This made it just barely able to sustain Dizyntk life. The problem for landing a ship however was due to Lilac's atmosphere being highly charged, causing large lightning storms to occur with alarming frequency. Thanks to its position relative to the gas giant it circled, it also was unapproachable by starships that relied only on their star drives for propulsion. The gravitational field of the large planet would not allow these drives to function well enough for them to escape once they had entered it. Therefore only ships which also had strong conventional drives, like the Jade Sprinter, could operate into and out of Lilac. It would not be the first choice, or the second for that matter, for a planet on which to build cities. This was why it was used for the purpose it was. The Orders did not need to worry about having much in the way of visitors here.

In the event, the ship made its way through Lilac's roiled atmosphere with little trouble. Velakari whispered a small prayer of thanks as she felt the ship touch down and made her way to the ship's main hatch by herself. The crew would remain onboard as no dizyntk who was not a Priestess was allowed to set foot on Lilac, not even the Empress. As soon as Velakari exited the ship and was able to look around, she could not see why anyone would want to. Lilac was, for the most part, a bleak planet. What plant life existed was mainly grass and mosses. The fierce storms that lashed the planet's surface with fair regularity were not conducive to the appearance of anything resembling trees. Even the planet's animal life was mostly small and spent a lot of its time underground. Then there was the sunlight, or relative lack thereof. The planet was on the outer edge of the system's habitable zone and this made for weak light even at midday, on the rare day that was not overcast. Combined with the fact that only half the planet received direct sunlight, due to its being tidally locked to the gas giant it circled, one could understand that Lilac held little potential for sightseers.

Velakari knew all of this firsthand of course. She herself had trained on the planet for five cyankas when she was younger. In fact, it was only recently that she had been away from the planet for as long as she had trained there. She softly shook her head to clear these thoughts. The reason she was here had nothing to do with herself. She ignored the wind that whipped her hair and refused to even raise the hood of her robes over her head. Truth be told, she had always enjoyed the wind in her hair, even on Lilac. As she approached the entrance to the Temple next to the landing area, the door opened and Velakari saw a Priestess with golden hair waiting for her. It was the dizyntk she had come to pick up.

Veenalara Thersin had wanted to be a Priestess for a long time; much longer than most dizyntk would readily believe. A real Priestess, not just one in name only as she had been for so long. She had readily agreed to the idea that Velakari had proposed to her a cyanka ago as she sat with an unconscious Eric Wolf in the healing center room he had been in. It meant leaving Eric for at least cyanka. It also meant that she would not be able to live with him for some while after that, but she would be able to see him as much as she wished after her training was complete. The most important thing to her however was that she was now a fully trained priestess. The only question that was left to be answered was that of whether the Empress had agreed to the idea that Velakari had suggested.

Velakari came to a stop in front of Veenalara. Veenalara bowed her head. "Welcome back to Lilac, Sister Velakari." she said.

Velakari looked her over before returning the bow. When last she had seen Veenalara, she had been given the simple white robes that all training priestesses wore on Lilac, regardless of their Order. Now she was wearing the more elaborate hooded robes of a fully trained Priestess who was studying on Lilac. They were also no longer the white of a priestess in training but the light magenta of the Nebula Order.

"It is my pleasure to have returned in order to fulfill my promise to you, Sister Veenalara." Velakari said as she bowed her head in response.

"Has the Empress agreed to the idea you had?" Veenalara asked as she raised her head.

"She was ... hesitant, at first. But she finally conceded that it was probably the best solution any of us could come up with." Velakari replied. "That being said however, is Revered Sister Isalifina here yet?"

Alara's eyes went wide at that name. "Revered Sister Isalifina? She is coming here?"

Isalifina was the Head Priestess of the Silver Order, the largest of the Major Orders. As such she was considered the highest ranking Priestess in the Imperium. She was also an advisor and long time friend of Empress Ziniadyra.

Velakari chuckled a bit. "I take it from your reaction that she is not. Yes, she is coming here."

She then explained, "The only way the Empress will grant her final permission is if her most trusted advisor goes over your training with your instructor. Revered Sister Theracini must be satisfied with your training and give Revered Sister Isalifina her assurance that you can keep your powers under proper control."

Veenalara sighed and nodded. She knew that this was a major sticking point. She had actually been able to complete her priestess training in about four months. The other twelve had been spent relentlessly training to keep her immense powers on a tight leash, no matter the provocation. Since knowledge of her existence as a Faylantkrana was tightly controlled, the Head Priestess of Lilac and her two closest assistants had been in direct charge of training her.

"I do hope that you have not given Revered Sister Theracini too much trouble." Velakari said in light tone.

Before Veenalara could reply to this another voice answered for her.

"Of course she has not, Sister Velakari." the elderly Priestess approaching them said.

Both Velakari and Veenalara bowed to her. "It is good to see you are well, Revered Sister." Velakari said.

"And you, Sister Velakari." Theracini replied. "It has been a most exhilarating challenge to actually be able to train one such as Sister Veenalara. It was also a pleasure as she is truly desirous of being able to serve. Luckily, we still had most of the old texts dealing with her unique training."

Veenalara blushed a bit at this praise. "Thank you for your kind words, Revered Sister."

"I think you will be able to do just fine in your new home." Theracini concluded.

Just then, another voice joined the conversation. "I am very happy to hear you say that, old friend."

Revered Sister Isalifina walked into the still open door of the Temple. The three Priestesses all bowed to her and said, "Welcome to Lilac, Revered Sister Isalifina."

She nodded to the three of them and then walked to her old friend, Sister Theracini. "Come and let us go to your office then, my friend, and review this one's progress." she said while smiling at Veenalara.

The two elder Sisters walked away while already discussing Veenalara's training. Velakari smiled at Alara and called back to the Captain of the Jade Sprinter. She told him that they would soon be lifting off with their planned guest.

Ariarisha Zerleen slowly awoke from a very deep sleep. She was still somewhat tired but also very happy. She had had a long, but fun night. She had had a long day yesterday as well. She would not dream of complaining however. Yesterday had been her tenth birthday. Her great grandmother had given her a splendid party. Afterwards she had a more intimate party with her friends. After that was the most intimate event of all in celebration of her tenth cyanka. This was with the dizyntk she loved more than anyone outside of her family. Actually she had come to live with her family as of yesterday, so Aria felt no need to make the distinction any longer. She looked at the beautiful girl snuggled next to her. Aria had her arms and tail wrapped around the sleeping form of her dearest friend, Lilavasi. She hugged her tighter and gently kissed the tips of her ears.

As she nuzzled the top of Vasi's head and inhaled the scent of her hair, she felt Vasi gently tighten her own embracing arms.

"Good morning, pretty girl." Aria said.

Vasi gave Aria's chest a soft lick before replying. "Pretty am I?"

"And sexy, and arousing, and charming, and smart..." Aria said.

Vasi, slightly embarrassed by this flood of compliments, interrupted Aria's rambling by tickling her. Aria returned the favor and the two continued this for a couple of minutes before Aria was able to pin her friend's arms to the bed. Lilavasi finally surrendered.

Vasi gave a derisive sniff. "So you won against a blind girl."

Aria snickered at this. "Against this particular blind girl, that is a praiseworthy feat."

Vasi slowly smiled at this. "Perhaps."

"Are you hungry?" Aria asked. She knew that she herself was starving.

"Very." Vasi answered. "But what time is it?"

Aria looked over at her clock. "Almost eleven in the morning. Why?"

Vasi giggled lightly. "Because your mother said that she did not want to see either of us out of your room until after midday."

"Our room." Aria corrected her friend.

Vasi nodded. "Yes, our room." She then felt Aria kiss her lightly on the lips.

"I suppose we can have some food brought to the room?" Aria suggested.

"A good idea." Vasi replied.

Aria released her hold on her and Vasi stretched each limb to its fullest as she slowly sat up. She winced just a little as she did so.

"Sore?" Aria asked with a smile.

"Yes, I am." Vasi replied. She ran her fingertips across the teeth marks on her shoulder. "In several places."

Ariarisha nodded in agreement. She too had felt the various pains all over her body. The soreness, not only from the marks her friend's teeth and claws had made but also the very recent loss of her virginity, was quite evident. Lilavasi had been unexpectedly aggressive last night.

Ariarisha wrapped her arms around Lilavasi's neck and kissed her. "Are you going to be like you were last night every time?"

Vasi smiled and nuzzled against Aria's neck. "Maybe. Did you enjoy it?"

"Goddess yes." Aria said. She had never known that it was possible to feel as good as Vasi had made her feel last night.

Vasi laughed and hugged her friend tightly. "Good. I will always leave you exhausted after a night of sex with me. This I swear on my House's honor."

Aria nearly fell back to the bed from laughing so hard.

Vasi sat upright quickly. "What is so funny about that!?" she demanded to know.

It took Aria a few seconds to get her laughter under control. In that time Lilavasi began to growl in irritation at her friend. Aria was able to get herself under control, barely. She cradled Vasi's face in her hands and planted light kisses all over it.

"I am sorry, Vasi." she said between kisses. "Forgive me. But, that is not something you need to swear on your House's honor. You just needed to say that you would keep doing it."

Vasi blushed as she realized that she had indeed sounded quite formal for such an intimate setting. She took Aria's face in her hands and stopped her butterfly kisses.

"You are right, that was a bit serious sounding." Vasi said quietly. She leaned in only inches away. "But let me say this seriously and mean every word of it. I love you, Ariarisha. I have for five cyankas."

Aria's laughter, which had been subdued but still present, vanished altogether at this. She pulled Vasi to her and hugged her tightly.

"I have loved you for that long as well." Aria said. "Ever since that moment we killed that cidnak and hobbled out of the preserve together."

Lilavasi nodded in agreement. That was the exact moment that she had fallen in love with Ariarisha as well. They were both too young at the time to realize it but, looking back with an older perspective, they both knew that was where it began.

As they sat there holding each other, both of their stomachs rumbled at the same time. They both fell to the bed laughing and proceeded to plant soft kisses on each other's face for a couple of minutes. Afterwards, Aria sat up and reached for the phone next to the bed.

"Grilled or fried?" Ariarisha asked, referring to their breakfast meats.

"Seared." Vasi said as she sat up as well and leaned her head against Aria's shoulder.

"Only?" Aria asked.

"Yes." Vasi replied.

Ariarisha nodded and called the kitchen. Dizyntk often enjoyed their meats extremely rare, practically raw in fact. The searing was only being done for flavor. This was especially true after having lost blood for any reason. Aria smiled at that thought as she ordered the seared meat. She and Vasi had indeed lost a bit of blood last night, as the stains on the sheets and scent in the air attested. After ordering, Aria lay back down with Vasi and the two of them softly cuddled. They did this for ten minutes before Aria knew she had to get up.

Aria stroked Vasi's hair. "I need to get up and put something on before the servant brings the food."

"Why?" Vasi asked. "It is not as if any of them have not seen you naked before."

Aria laughed at this. "True, but none have seen me with your teeth and claw marks adorning my body."

Vasi smiled and nodded. She had indeed been quite aggressive last night. She sat up and allowed Aria to get off the bed and go to her wardrobe to get a robe to put on. As she did so, Vasi slowly got off the bed herself. Feeling for where she knew the furniture in the room to be, she oriented herself and made her way to the door of the small restroom. After entering, she closed the door and felt around. She smiled as she realized that Aria had even managed to get this room to exactly replicate the one that had been in Vasi's room back on Dizyn; right down to where the soap was.

Aria had looked back as she heard the door to her restroom close. She smiled happily at the fact that her work to make her quarters easy for Vasi to use had paid off. Just as she got her robe tied, there was a soft knock at her bedroom door. She walked over and opened it. Risakala stood there with a cart containing the breakfast Aria had ordered.

"Risa? I did not expect you to bring this for me." Aria said in surprise.

It was not that Aria had a problem with this. Quite the contrary, she loved Risa dearly and almost thought of her as family. She had been a servant in her mother's quarters in the Palace since the very first day they had arrived here five and a half cyankas ago. It was just that Risa was now in charge of all the servants in this part of the Palace, in addition to still being Feyalisa's personal attendant.

"Your mother is out for a while, My Lady." she said with a small bow of her head. "Besides, I could not leave serving you your first breakfast after such an important night to just anyone."

Ariarisha smiled and nodded as she stepped aside to let Risa push the cart into the room. As soon as she was in, Risakala stopped, withdrew a handkerchief from her pocket, wetted it in one of the glasses of water on the tray and turned to Ariarisha.

"Allow me, My Lady." she said as she wiped the tip of Aria's nose.

Aria was too surprised to either say anything or move. Then she saw the light red stain on the cloth as Risakala showed it to her after finishing.

Aria gave a look of mild displeasure and groaned. "Oh perfect. Are there any other obvious signs?"

Risa smiled at her and patted her head gently. "There is no reason for you to concern yourself with such things, Lady Ariarisha. We all know that you turned ten cyankas yesterday."

Aria sighed and nodded. "I suppose so, Risa."

Risa then took a brief sniff of the air. "Besides which, only a very young or very dead dizyntk would not know what this musky scent in your room meant."

Aria growled playfully at Risa. Risa bowed to her and set the food onto the small table in Aria's room.

Lilavasi exited the restroom at this point and, even though she knew that Vasi could not see it, Risakala reflexively bowed her head to her.

"Good morning, Lady Lilavasi." Risa said.

Vasi smiled at the sound of the voice. "Risa!"

She walked carefully to where she had heard Risa's voice and hugged her.

"I have not talked to you since I arrived." Vasi said to Risakala.

"I am happy to see you again as well, My Lady." Risa said. "I am very happy that you will be living here."

Risa stepped back and looked at Vasi. "Will I be tending your wounds, or will Lady Ariarisha be taking care of that?"

Vasi blushed slightly as she realized that she was still completely naked and Risa could see every mark that Aria had made in her. "I would hope that Aria would take care of them."

Risa nodded and looked at Aria with a slight smile. "And here My Lady was worried about any obvious signs of what transpired in here last night."

"Alright, alright, I know it's not something I should be embarrassed about." Aria said defensively.

"No, it is not." Risakala told Aria.

She then took Aria's hand and gently pulled her to Lilavasi. "Now, My Ladies, the two of you eat your meal. I will go and prepare the bath for you. When you two are finished eating, you should go and bathe while I clean you room."

Risa looked at the bed while raising an eyebrow. "And burn the sheets apparently."

Aria and Vasi giggled at that remark. Aria could see that the sheets were indeed a mess. Vasi could not see them of course, but was well aware that they must have a least a few blood stains given her and Aria's activities last night.

Risa smiled at them, walked to the door, turned and bowed. "Very well then, My Ladies, I shall be back in half an hour to clear your dishes and clean the room."

Aria and Vasi both gave a bow of their heads in return. Both laughed a bit after the door closed, then went to the table and began digging into the food. They were both ravenous.

Aria led Vasi to the bath they had been in only the night before. She helped Vasi carefully into the steaming water. The contact of the hot water on the cuts and bite marks on her body caused Lilavasi to take a sharp breath. Aria followed her in and was just able to keep herself from taking a similar breath. Her face did contort a bit from the sharp pain though. The two of them proceeded to gently wash each other off. Although the sting of the soap served to remind them of their wounds, by that point the minor pain was also reminding them of how they had gotten them. After their cleaning was finished they sat next to each other, fingers of one hand each interlaced and simply enjoyed the heat of the water on their bodies.

After several minutes, Lilavasi softly spoke. "I suppose that there is only one thing left for us to do."

Aria smiled at the remark. Without even bothering to open her eyes, she responded. "And we have to wait two cyankas, again, to do it. Does it seem we have to wait two cyankas for something all the time?"

"Yes it does." Vasi said.

Another couple minutes passed. Lilavasi began to think about something she had been considering for some time.

"So tell me, have you been close with any of your other friends?" Vasi asked.

Aria opened her eyes this time and thought about it. Strangely, considering how long the two had been close, they had never talked about this before. "I've kissed three, no, four others besides you, of course. Only one of them more than once. You?"

"You have me beat by one." Vasi admitted. She pouted just a bit as she continued "But none of mine earned a second round."

The two of them laughed at this.

Vasi then asked, "Was the one that earned a repeat performance male or female?"

"A male." Aria responded.

Vasi nodded. "Good."

Aria sat up straight and looked at Vasi. "Why do you say that?"

Vasi continued to lean against the wall of the tub in a relaxed state. "Because even though I love you, Ariarisha, and have every intention of bonding with you, there is one thing that I cannot give you. A thing that as an heir to the throne you must think about."

"Children." Aria stated as she closed her eyes. She had thought about this in private and knew Vasi was right. She did not really want to think about that right now though.

"I was hoping that perhaps we could wait a cyanka or so before we have to think about finding a male to be with." she said, trying to delay the topic.

Lilavasi squeezed the hand she was holding and pulled Aria gently to her. She wrapped her arms around Aria and kissed the tips of her ears.

"The longer we delay this the harder it will be." Vasi said. "You know that, my love."

My love. The argument that was forming in Aria's mind vanished when she heard Vasi call her that. It was the first time she had done so. This was because, before last night, it would not have been enitrely proper for her to do so.

Ariarisha sighed, closed her eyes and stroked Vasi's hair. "I know. I just wanted to have you all to myself for a bit longer."

Vasi kissed her lips gently. "You shall, my love. There is no male that I am acquainted with that I would wish to bond with. Therefore I need to take time to get to know one. Perhaps there is one, such as he who earned a second kiss from you, that you might have a passing fancy for?"

Aria smiled as she thought about the boy she had kissed not twice but on three occasions.

"Revan." Aria said. "Revan is the one that I like."

Vasi smiled as well at this revelation. There had only been six other dizyntk at Aria's birthday party in Feyalisa's quarters the previous evening. Only two were male, so Vasi had already assumed that it was one of them. Revanirin was one of Aria's oldest friends. He had already been enrolled at the school Ariarisha attended when she had first arrived on Sapphire. This meant she had known him longer than she had known Lilavasi. Vasi had first met him several cyankas ago when she first visited, along with the rest of Ariarisha's friends on Sapphire. Vasi always thought he had a pleasant voice and polite manners. He also seemed to always be a bit reserved around Aria.

"I am unsure of his scent." Vasi said. "But he seems nice. He was one of the two who brought me a gift as well yesterday."

"Of course he did." Aria said. "Even if he did not think of doing so himself, his mother would never have let him come without one for you."

Vasi nodded. "I can tell by how courteous he is that he has been well brought up."

"He should be considering that his mother..." Aria began to say.

Aria suddenly started laughing as she thought of something.

Vasi sat upright with a look of surprise. "What is so funny?"

Aria shook her head to try and clear it of the thought she had.

"It is just that, oh Goddess that's funny, it's just that I can see his mother's face when she hears I like him like that." Aria said as she continued to laugh.

Vasi was somewhat confused by this statement. "Why, does she have a problem with you?"

"What are you talking about? You know what his mother is like, she..." Aria said.

Then she saw the look of confusion on Vasi's face deepen. Her hands flew to her mouth as she realized what this meant.

"Oh Goddess! You don't know who his mother is?" Aria said

Vasi shook her head. "No. I do not believe you have ever told me his family name."

Aria launched into a new fit of laughter as she realized Vasi was right about this. Aria had never bothered to mention Revan's family name. It had simply never occurred to her to do so. Most anyone else would have been able to see the family resemblance for themselves. Aria was so used to treating Vasi like anyone else though that she had forgotten that she could not do this.

Vasi growled at Aria's amusement and splashed her with a face full of hot water. Aria coughed as she got a bit in her throat.

"I'm sorry, my love." Aria said between coughs. "I truly did not realize you didn't know who his mother was."

"So?" Vasi asked.

"His family name is Niltinika." Aria said in a whisper.

Lilavasi looked confused again. She did not recognize the name at first. She thought she knew the family names of all the Noble Houses and prominent families on Sapphire but this was not one of them. Aria could see the confusion on her lover's face. She also knew why Lilavasi was having a hard time placing the name.

"He is not from one of the families you are thinking about." Aria said.

"But that would mean..." Vasi said. The only other children in the school Aria attended were those from the various families that worked as servants at the palace and the only one of those whose family name she had ever heard was...

Vasi gasped at the realization that she did indeed know the name, even though it had been some time since she had heard it. She proceeded to fall into her own bout of laughter at this point.

"See what I mean?" Aria asked as she began to laugh again as well.

"He is Risakala's son?" Vasi asked while still laughing.

"Yes he is." Aria replied as she fell sideways into the bath.

After they both had gotten the laughter out of their systems, Vasi asked "She does not know that you and he have kissed?"

"I don't think so." Aria answered. "She knows we are friends, of course, but I don't think she knows how close we have become in the past cyanka."

"Twice huh?" Vasi asked.

"No." Aria responded. "Three times."

Vasi slowly made her way to Aria and wrapped her arms around her.

"Three times?" Vasi said in feigned disapproval. "Ariarisha Zerleen, how could you?"

Aria leaned in closely to her lover's lips. "It was easy. I just did something like this."

She then kissed Lilavasi. They proceeded to kiss and hold each other for several more minutes before finally getting out of the bath and returning to their room.

Two days later, Ziniadyra Asarazyntk, former Empress of the Imperium, sat quietly at a table located at the base of the spire on top of the Sapphire Palace. She was enjoying the breeze and the view, as well as a snack of dried fish. More importantly she was enjoying something she had not been able to do since she became Empress ten cyankas ago; the pleasure of doing absolutely nothing. She had officially stepped down from the throne six months ago. In the interim there had actually been a lot that she had to do. Finally, last evening, she fulfilled the wistful thought she had expressed to her cousin, Kiasyphia. She had come to stay for a while on the planet that House Asarazyntk had originally maintained as their seat of power, Sapphire.

She heard her cup being filled and turned to smile at her cousin. "How long has it been since you actually poured tea for another?"

"Hmm, let me see." Kiasyphia pondered as she finished pouring for both of them. "If we count my bonded granddaughter, Asinalani, then only about three days ago."

Ziniadyra smiled as she brought the cup to her lips. "I suppose that is the only way we maintain such skills, isn't it?"

"Truly." Kiasyphia replied and took a sip of her drink.

After taking her drink, Ziniadyra asked, "I wonder what I am going to do to pass the time while you attend your duties."

"I thought the whole point of you coming here was that you did not want to do anything." Kiasyphia pointed out.

"This is true." Ziniadyra replied. "But I get the feeling that I would like to have some small thing to keep me occupied. Like having tea with your grandchildren?"

"I think not, Zinia." Kiasyphia said firmly. "That is one of the little things that help me keep my sanity."

They both laughed at the truth of this statement.

"Perhaps you could spend some time with your own granddaughter." Kiasyphia suggested. "She is older than Asina and Kalen, but still."

"My granddaughter?" Zinia asked.

"Lilavasi." Kiasyphia stated. "Do not tell me that you did not know she was here?"

"I did not!" Zinia exclaimed happily. "Why is she here?"

Kiasyphia sighed and shook her head. "Honestly. To not know that one of your own family has moved to a different planet. I think I need to get up and swipe the back of your ear."

"Lilavasi is living here?" Ziniadyra asked, studiously ignoring her cousin's comment.

"Of course she is. Ariarisha turned ten four days ago." Kiasyphia told her.

Ziniadyra hung her head and laughed lightly. "I guess that does make sense. Those two have loved each other since that incident five cyankas ago on Dizyn."

"Given the lack of fanfare over your arrival, I highly doubt that she knows you are here." Kiasyphia said.

Ziniadyra chuckled to herself. "I guess that it would be quite the surprise if I dropped by for dinner, wouldn't it?"

"No doubt." Kiasyphia replied. "I am also sure that she would enjoy spending time with you. As the youngest child of your youngest child, I am sure that you did not manage to spend enough time with her when you were Empress."

"True." she admitted. "I doted on her when she was younger, especially after the accident that took her sight, but I have not spent nearly enough time with her since then."

"Then I think that is an excellent use of your time." Kiasyphia said before taking another sip.

Zinia nodded her agreement and the two of them sat quietly for another few minutes.

As she finished her tea, Kiasyphia thought of something. "My granddaughter's bonded mate, Velakari, will be returning to Sapphire in a few days. She will have the Faylantkrana with her."

Ziniadyra nodded and reached into a small bag sitting next to her chair. "I have the order with me. Delivering it in person was a good excuse for me to finally get away from Dizyn."

She handed a rolled parchment tied with a black cord to Kiasyphia. "The last Imperial Edict issued before I stepped down from the throne."

Kiasyphia untied the cord and unrolled the parchment. There were only two copies of the edict in existence; the one she held in her hands and one in the Imperial archives on Dizyn. That one was well hidden in the reams of Imperial decisions, edicts, orders, decrees and correspondence stored in the archives. It had been left unlabeled and there was no mention of it in the archive's directory. It was like hiding a tree in a forest. One was only likely to find it if they were specifically looking for it. This one would eventually find similar concealment in the archives located in the basement levels of the Sapphire Palace.

Kiasyphia read the edict in order to make sure she understood what was required by it. Although she had heard what Velakari had suggested to the Empress a cyanka ago, she had not known what the edict issued by Ziniadyra right before her abdication actually said. It was the ninety-forth edict issued by an Empress and one of the shortest. It basically said that Veenalara would serve at the Temple outside the Royal Palace on Sapphire. She was to live there and not be allowed to leave Sapphire for any reason for two cyankas. That, in itself, was not an unusual thing. The unusual part, and the one in direct contradiction of Imperial Edict Three, was that she would also be considered a member of the Royal Guard. Her existence as a Faylantkrana was to be officially known by only twelve dizyntk, as of the time Edict Ninety-Four went into force.

In effect, Veenalara was being given a two cyanka probationary period on Sapphire to prove that she was able to control her powers. After that she would remain under the watchful eye of the Orders but would be allowed to live a more or less normal life as a Priestess, so long as she kept her powers in check.

"I have wondered why we decided to have her serve on Sapphire, and in my Royal Guard, as opposed to Dizyn and the Imperial Guard." Kiasyphia said. "Was it simply proximity to her Order's location on Kalantk?"

"Precisely." Ziniadyra answered. "It would have raised far too many questions for a Priestess of such a small Order, located all the way out on Kalantk, to be suddenly assigned to serve at the Imperial Temple on Dizyn. Even being assigned to serve on Sapphire will likely raise a few questions, but not nearly as many considering Sapphire is much closer to Kalantk."

"I suppose you are right." Kiasyphia said, sounding only half convinced.

"What choice did we have, Syphia?" Zinia asked. "Would you have had me confine her to Lilac, or worse, simply because of what she is?"

Syphia sighed deeply. "No, Zinia, I would not have wanted that. I just hope that the existence of her powers remains unknown to the general populace."

"As do I, Goddess willing." Zinia said.

Syphia nodded in agreement, stood and stretched. "Well, my friend, I am afraid that I must return to my duties."

"I know you must." Ziniadyra said.

She then waved her away with a well practiced imperious manner. "Away with you then, Kiasyphia. I must go and visit my granddaughter."

Kiasyphia repressed a laugh and gave an exaggerated bow. "As you wish, my dear Empress."

She made a sweeping turn and walked through the open door at the base of the spire. It was all Ziniadyra could do not to fall from her chair as she laughed.

It was ten at night when the Jade Sprinter touched down four days later at the starport located within the walls of the Royal Palace on Sapphire. As the ship settled onto its landing gear, five dizyntk awaited the egress of the two passengers the ship carried. There were no personal protection troops anywhere to be seen. This was highly unusual considering the ranks and positions of the dizyntk in the small group. Then again, the subject that was going to be discussed shortly was even more unusual.

Former Empress Ziniadyra Asarazyntk was here to make sure that the individual she had issued a formal Imperial Edict for, just a day before she abdicated the throne, fully understood its restrictions.

Queen Kiasyphia Zerleen needed to make sure of this as well, all the more so as this priestess would be serving in her Royal Guard, albeit covertly.

Liracalia Tilikant, as the current Head Priestess of the planet Sapphire, was ultimately responsible for the actions of any priestess on the planet. This one all the more so considering Veenalara's powers. She would also, assuming she was still serving at her post in two cyankas, be one of the two responsible for determining whether or not Veenalara would be allowed to live on her own or travel away from Sapphire. In addition to these reasons, there was one other thing Liracalia had to do tonight.

General Kristakala Arlinell was the Commanding Officer of the Sapphire Royal Guard. It would most likely fall to her to decide whether or not to allow Veenalara to use her fearsome powers should a crisis develop. As such she felt obligated to get to know the young priestess.

Finally, there was the officer chosen by Kristakala to be responsible for the maintenance of Veenalara's military training, Colonel Virathea Tzilank. Virathea was here for much the same reason as her commander. These were five of the six dizyntk currently on the planet that were authorized to know what Veenalara actually was via Edict Ninety-Four.

Veenalara exited the ship and walked towards the group waiting for her. Just a couple of steps behind her was Velakari. Veenalara was noticeably nervous. She had never even met the Duchess of her House back in the days of her serving as a Faylantkrana. Now she was approaching an Empress and a Queen. Velakari noticed the nervousness even from behind and gently cleared her throat.

Veenalara pivoted one ear to listen and Velakari whispered, "Take a deep breath and calm yourself, Sister. It will be alright."

Veenalara nodded slightly and did as Velakari suggested. As she finally reached Ziniadyra, Veenalara dropped softly to both knees and bowed her head. Velakari stepped in front of her and bowed her head to Ziniadyra. At the same time she presented a small rolled parchment with both hands. Ziniadyra took it with a slight nod and Velakari stepped to the side and turned to face Veenalara along with the rest of those present.

Zinia unrolled the message and read it. She smiled and looked back down at the kneeling priestess. "I see that that Head Priestesses Isalifina and Theracini have agreed that your training has been successfully completed."

"Yes, Your Majesty." Veenalara said.

"I am no longer the Empress, but I suppose that is not important." Ziniadyra said. "Rise, Veenalara Thersin."

Veenalara did this and saw that Ziniadyra was holding another, larger rolled parchment out to her. "This is the Edict that defines the terms of your freedom from being kept on Lilac. Read it carefully, Sister Veenalara."

Veenalara took the parchment, unrolled it and began to read. She read it slowly, silently mouthing the words as she did so. Several times she stopped and re-read a section to insure that she properly understood it. After she had finished she looked up at Ziniadyra.

"Do you understand and accept the Edict as it is written?" Ziniadyra asked.

"I do, Your Majesty." Veenalara replied. "Thank you for giving me this chance to prove myself."

Ziniadyra nodded curtly and said, "You are welcome, Sister Veenalara. Just make sure you do make me regret giving it to you."

"I will not." Veenalara assured her.

Ziniadyra nodded again. "That is all I have to say, young Sister. Although I suppose that you are not technically that young. It would probably be wise to keep that to yourself as well."

"Yes, Your Majesty, I will." Veenalara said with a bit of a smile.

"Well, I think I will retire to my room now." Ziniadyra said. "Good night all."

The others all said, "Good night, You Majesty." as Ziniadyra turned and walked towards the palace.

Queen Kiasyphia stepped forward to Veenalara who bowed her head. Kiasyphia extended her hand to where Veenalara could see it. She was confused for a moment but then realized what was desired and she handed the Edict to the Queen. Kiasyphia promptly handed it to Velakari.

"You need to read it as well, Velakari. This was your idea after all." Kiasyphia said to her.

"As you wish, My Queen." Velakari said as she took the Edict and began to read it.

The Queen turned her attention back to Veenalara. "Sister Veenalara Thersin of the Nebula Order, you are, as of this moment, a member of the Sapphire Royal Guard as per the terms of Imperial Edict Ninety-Four."

She then gestured to Kristakala. "This is the Commanding Officer of my Guard, General Kristakala Arlinell. She will be the one who is most likely to make any decisions regarding the use of any of your powers in combat."

Veenalara looked at the General and bowed her head to her. "It is my hope that you will never need to call on me to use them, General."

Kristakala nodded. "From what I understand of them I share that hope, Sister Veenalara. The day after tomorrow you will report to my office before breakfast and we will discuss what training you have had."

"As you wish, General." Veenalara said.

The Queen then motioned for Virathea to step forward. "This is Colonel Virathea Tzilank. She has been chosen by the General to be the officer that oversees the maintenance of your military skills."

"I look forward to being under your care, Colonel Virathea." Veenalara said.

"We will see if that holds true after I start your training, Sister." Virathea said. "Our first session will be two days hence, after your meeting with General Kristakala. After that it will be up to the Head Priestess of the Temple you are serving at as to what two days each week you will train with me."

"Hopefully I will surprise you with my level of fitness." Veenalara said.

"We will see, Sister." Virathea replied as she stepped back behind and beside General Kristakala.

The Queen nodded to Virathea and Kristakala. They both returned this with a bow of the head, turned and walked towards the palace.

Kiasyphia reached out and took Liracalia's hand. "My bonded mate, Liracalia, you already know I believe."

"Yes, I do, Your Majesty." Veenalara replied. "It is good to see you again, Revered Sister."

"And you, Sister Veenalara." Liracalia responded

"She is also the Head Priestess of Sapphire." Kiasyphia told her. "Therefore her decisions will factor greatly into you future freedom of movement."

"I realize this, Your Majesty. I will follow whatever decisions that Revered Sister Liracalia makes." Veenalara assured her.

Liracalia stepped forward and took Veenalara's hands in hers. "Trust in your training and if ever you feel the need to talk to either myself or the Head Sister of your Temple then do not hesitate to do so."

"I will, Revered Sister." Veenalara said.

Velakari, having finished reading the Edict, looked around. "Where is Revered Sister Sanathela anyway? Is her health poor again?"

Velakari knew that the elderly Head Priestess of the Royal Temple had not been in the best of health in recent months.

"Yes it is, Velakari." Liracalia said as she turned her head to look at her. "In fact she was taken to the Royal Healing Center the day after you left. She will likely be there for another week or so."

"Oh no. I must make plans to go and see her tomorrow." Velakari said.

"I think she will understand if you do not have the time to do so, Velakari." Kiasyphia said.

"What are you talking about?" Velakari asked.

"She has decided that her health no longer permits her to serve in her current capacity." Liracalia explained. "I agreed with her and agreed to send her to the Temple nearest her family's home so that she may spend her remaining cyankas there as an associate Priestess. It will be less of a strain on her health and she will be able to spend time with her grandchildren."

"Who is the new Head Sister then?" Velakari asked.

Liracalia turned fully to Velakari and took her hands now. "I discussed this with her as well. We both agreed that you are the best choice for this, Sister Velakari."

Velakari's eyes went wide at this. "Me? But I am too young and, and no member of my Order has ever been head of the Royal Temple and, and I do not even reside at the Temple and, and..."

Liracalia wrapped her arms around Velakari, who was threatening to hyperventilate. "Calm yourself, Velakari. I know that this is sudden but, firstly, your age has nothing to do with anything. Younger priestesses than yourself have been named head of Temples. Your Order has nothing to do with anything either, you know that. The fact that no Priestess of the Jade Order has headed the Royal Temple here is just happenstance. As for your not residing at the Temple..."

She released Velakari and took a step back to look at her. Kari had calmed down considerably. "From what I have been told by Sister Sanathela and the other Priestesses that serve at the Royal Temple, you spend as much, if not more, time serving at the Temple than many of those that do reside there. Besides which, it is not as though you live far from it."

Velakari closed her eyes and nodded. It was true that she spent many hours every week at the Temple. Some weeks she spent seven out of eight days there, although usually just six.

"Not to mention this was all your idea anyway, Velakari." Kiasyphia chimed in. "You should at least take some responsibility for overseeing Sister Veenalara as a consequence."

"You are most correct, My Queen." Velakari said. She opened her eyes and looked at Liracalia. "I accept this responsibility, Revered Sister Liracalia."

She then turned and looked at Veenalara. "It would seem that now I will be responsible for your day to day activities as well as deciding when and where you may travel. I hope that we get along well for the cyankas to come."

"I am sure we will, Revered Sister Velakari." Veenalara said. She was quite happy at this turn of events as she was already somewhat fond of Velakari for having had faith in her from the start of this.

"Well, if there is nothing else?" Velakari asked as se looked back to the queen and Liracalia.

They both shook their heads. There was nothing more either of them needed to add.

"In that case." Velakari said as she extended her hand to Veenalara. "Come with me, Sister Veenalara, and I will show you where you will be living."

As Veenalara and Velakari walked towards the main gate of the palace grounds, Kiasyphia again took her bonded mate's hand.

"I hope that things go well, Lira. There are so many things that could go wrong." Kiasyphia said to her.

Liracalia turned and gently embraced her. "Have faith, my love, in both the young Sister's determination to do what is right and in the ability of Velakari to help her stay on that path."

Kiasyphia sighed. "I do not know this Faylantkrana well enough to have such faith yet."

She looked at their slowly receding forms. "But in Velakari I will have faith. If any priestess I know can pull this off, it is her."

Liracalia growled good naturedly. "My, my, thank you for that vote of confidence in me."

Kiasyphia playfully batted her mate's ear. "You know what I mean, silly Priestess."

Lira released her embrace and took Syphia's hand in hers. "Perhaps I do. Still, I believe that I will have you make it up to me. I feel like kissing and cuddling with my oldest love."

Kiasyphia shook her head in mild disbelief as she allowed Liracalia to lead her to the palace. "In that kind of mood are you?"

"Yes, I am." Liracalia confirmed. "Will you refuse me?"

"Have I ever been able to refuse your advances?" Kiasyphia asked.

"Very true, you have not." Liracalia said with an ever broadening smile. "I wonder if Westralen is still awake?"

"Oh? In that kind of mood as well are we?" Kiasyphia asked, her own smile spreading across her face.

"I do not know about you, my love, but I most certainly am." She looked back at Kiasyphia. "And if you are currently not, I am positive that I can get you into such a mood."

Kiasyphia could not help but laugh at Lira's assertion. She wrapped her arms around Lira's left arm and nuzzled against it as they continued walking.

"I am sure that you can, Lira." Kiasyphia agreed.

They walked all the way to the doors of the palace without adding anything, when Kiasyphia finally said one more thing. "Even if he is asleep, I think that Tralen will be quite happy to be awoken for such a reason."

Liracalia giggled a bit at this. "Very true, my love, very true."

It took twenty minutes for Veenalara and Velakari to walk to the main gate of the palace grounds from the small starport. The Royal Temple was just twenty meters to their left as they exited.

"This is it." Velakari said as they stopped outside the courtyard in front of the Temple.

"It is a beautiful Temple." Veenalara said.

"Indeed it is." Velakari agreed.

"How far from the Temple does Eric live, Revered Sister?" Veenalara asked.

Velakari smiled a bit, as she had every time Velakari had called her that in the past half hour. It would take her a little time to get used to being referred to as Revered Sister. The title was entirely appropriate as she was now the head priestess of a Temple, but that did not mean she was comfortable with it yet. Happy about it, yes, just not comfortable.

"He lives about two and a half kilometers away. You can walk there in half an hour if you are of a mind to do so." Velakari replied.

"Right now?" Veenalara asked.

"Why not?" Velakari asked in reply. "It is late and I do not feel like waking the Sisters that have already retired for the night."

"However, your room is the last one on the right side of the back hallway if you are tired, Sister Veenalara." she continued. Then she handed Veenalara a small piece of paper. "These are the directions to Eric Wolf's apartment, if you are more interested in something else."

Veenalara was unsure what to say as she looked at the paper in her hand. Velakari turned and began to walk back towards the place grounds gate.

"I expect to see you at the Temple no later than noon tomorrow, Sister Veenalara." she said as she walked away.

Veenalara smiled to herself, closed her eyes and held the paper to her chest. She thought the matter over for just a few moments before she opened her eyes and began walking towards the city.

The directions Velakari had written were clear and easy to follow. As she had said, it took thirty minutes to walk to the building. Now, Veenalara was standing in front of his door. She had purposely not asked any questions about Eric before she had inquired of Velakari as to where he lived. There were many such questions in her head, but she had been unsure if she wanted to ask them. Did he ever ask about her, was he doing well on Sapphire, did he have friends, were any of them close friends? These were the questions that usually filled Veenalara's mind whenever she thought of him. She knew that he had agreed to move to Sapphire after he had been released from the healing center. He obviously had still cared about her at the time. That had been three-fourths of a cyanka ago though. A lot could change in someone's heart and mind in twelve months. That thought was what had caused her to hesitate at ringing the doorbell. She stood in front of the door for almost two full minutes gathering her courage.

She finally gritted her teeth and growled at herself for her foolishness. She was finally free of her confinement and was a real priestess. She had everything she had ever wanted. The question was did this include someone who might be her mate in the future? She knew that was what she was worried about. All the more so since she had been away from him for a cyanka. She gathered her courage and pushed the doorbell. Several seconds passed and it seemed to Veenalara to be much longer than that. She almost forgot to breath. She at last heard the lock on the door unlatch.

Eric opened the door and smiled at Veenalara. He knew that she was supposed to be back this week, although he had not known precisely which day. Alara was frozen in place for a moment. Actually seeing Eric had brought back all of the feelings she had been developing for him a cyanka earlier.

Eric held out his arms to her. "What, no hug?"

Alara practically jumped into his arms and wrapped her own around him, hugging him tightly. Her tail wrapped around his waist and she nuzzled his chest. Eric embraced her a bit more gently and kissed the tips of her ears.

"I missed you, my little dizyntk." he whispered in her ear.

Alara just nodded in agreement as she continued to nuzzle against him. She wanted to make sure that his scent completely saturated her senses.

"I take it that your training is done." Eric said. "Or did you just steal a ship and escape to come see me?"

He could feel the laughter ripple through her body before the sound of it came out.

"Do you think me the kind of dizyntk to do something like that?" she asked as she finished nuzzling and looked up at him.

"Given your personality, I wouldn't put it past you." Eric replied.

Alara's eyes narrowed at that. "What kind of personality is that?"

"Oh you know, the kind that asks me to be her lover the day after we first have sex." Eric said lightly. "Or damages the interior of my ship to make a shower fit, or..."

Alara growled at him at this point. "Fine, perhaps I should just go back to the Temple for the evening."

Although Alara released her arms from around him, Eric did not return the favor. He continued to hold onto her. "What, let you go back to where you have just escaped from? I think not."

"I did not escape!" she insisted, but could not help smiling at the implication.

"Perhaps I should have said that you are tenacious and unwavering in your beliefs." Eric suggested.

Alara cocked her head to the side slightly and wrapped her arms around Eric again. "That is much better."

"So, are we going to stand here in the doorway the rest of the night, or are you going to come inside?" he asked.

"That depends." she replied.

"On what?" Eric asked.

"What is our standing? Are we lovers, close friends, just friends?" Alara asked in turn.

"Considering the things we did to each other the last time we were together, and I was not recovering from being shot, I would say close friends at the least." Eric answered.

Alara thought on this for a moment. "I suppose that is true. However, I thought we were lovers."

"We were pretending to be lovers, remember." Eric pointed out.

"We were not." Alara said. "I asked you if we could be lovers, not pretend to be, and you agreed."

Eric thought hard about the conversation they had had behind the bushes back then. "I suppose you are right, but you did say that you wouldn't hold me to that the last time we talked."

Alara let her gaze drop to the floor as she remembered saying that to him in the healing center. "That is true, I did say that."

"Of course I did agree to move all the way to Sapphire to wait for you to finish your training." Eric pointed out. "That means I want to give you a chance to regain that standing."

She looked back up at him and smiled a little. "Of course I would need to come inside if I wanted to start trying to convince you to let me be your lover once more."

Eric laughed and nodded. "Yes, you would."

Alara put both hands onto Eric's chest and gently pushed on him. He walked backwards several steps into his apartment and she followed him in, keeping her hands on his chest as she did so. As soon as the two of them had cleared the door, it closed briskly on its own and the lock clicked into place.

"Should you be doing things like that?" Eric asked.

"I won't tell anyone if you won't." she replied.

She then leapt up slightly, letting Eric catch her, and planted a long kiss on his lips. She wrapped her arms, legs and tail around him and let him carry her towards the bedroom. He laid her gently down on the bed and helped her remove her robes. This time he took care to put them on top of his dresser. As he turned back towards her and began undressing, Alara got to her knees on the bed and helped him remove his clothes.

She pulled him onto the bed with her and kissed him deeply before saying, "I must live up to the promise I made to you back then."

"Promise?" Eric asked.

Alara nodded and began running a hand down his body to his hardening cock. "That I would do my best to make you wish to remain with me."

With that she pushed him onto his back and crawled on top of him. She began kissing, nipping and licking his ears and neck. She continued stroking his cock, which was now quite erect, as she nibbled on his ear and brushed her tail up and down his legs. As she raised her hips and was about to put him inside herself, Eric briefly stopped her.

"We don't want to disturb the neighbors." he said as he glanced to the open bedroom door.

Eric knew that most Dizyntk dwellings were only soundproofed in regards to the bedrooms. Alara glanced irritably at the door and it slammed firmly shut. She looked back down at Eric, smiled, thrust her hips down and felt his hard cock slide all the way inside. Her head tilted back and she moaned as her body began moving up and down of its own accord. A cyanka had been far too long to be without Eric being inside of her.

Eric could certainly agree with that sentiment. He ran his hands up and down her lithe body as she rode him. After a few minutes he slid his hands to her chest and cupped her small, firm breasts. He felt her claws trace lightly up his arms as he did so. She placed her hands on his and encouraged him to squeeze harder. As he followed her implied request, her pace on top of him quickened. He could tell that she would not take long to climax. That was a good thing as he knew that he would not either at this rate.

Alara was completely oblivious to anything other than the pleasure sweeping through her body. She could feel her orgasm building and knew it was going to be an intense one. Just as she was about to reach her peak, she once again felt the odd, yet pleasurable sensation of Eric's approaching orgasm as well. She leaned forward and braced her hands on his shoulders. She rocked up and down faster and harder as the feeling of their two building climaxes blended in her mind.

Eric could feel the same thing in his mind as well. His hands slid down to her hips and he pulled her down harder on each of her downward thrusts. His own hips thrusting up to meet hers in perfect rhythm. The feel of her orgasm starting to break over her body caused him to pull her down and hold her there firmly as his cock erupted deep inside of her. The intensity of it made him yell out as he came.

Alara felt her climax peak. Just as it did, she also felt Eric cum inside her. She also clearly felt his orgasm as he did so. The combination of the two intense sensations caused her to dig her claws into Eric's shoulders. She flipped her head back and howled at the top of her lungs. Her body continued trembling in ecstasy long after the air in her lungs was expended and she could no longer howl. She was frozen in place, her head tilted as far back as it could go and her claws fully extended into Eric, for almost a minute. She finally collapsed on top of him, her claws quickly retracting.

Eric, while not quite so exhausted, was drained in another way. He was sure that he had never cum quite that hard in his life, not even on the previous times he had been with Alara. As he wrapped his arms around her small frame, he just wrote it off to their having been apart for do long as the cause of it. All he cared about right now was that she was finally back in his life. He really had missed her.

"So, am I back in your good graces?" Alara finally asked after she had caught her breath.

"You were never out of them." Eric replied.

Alara slid slowly up a bit and disengaged from his cock. She nuzzled his chest and giggled as she felt his seed spill out of her. She noticed the smell of blood and lifted her head a bit to look at his shoulders.

"That's a first." she said, as much to herself as to Eric.

"What, drawing blood during sex?" Eric asked. He had vaguely felt her do it but thought little of it. He had experienced it with other dizyntk before.

Alara nodded slowly as she scooted up a bit more so that she could lick his scratches. "I have not done that before."

She slowly licked her tongue across the blood on his right shoulder. Eric winced as she did so. It stung, but not so much that he would dream of asking her to stop.

It took a few minutes for the bleeding to stop and Alara kept licking gently on both shoulders the entire time. She needed no questions to know how Eric felt while she did this. She could feel the brief flashes of pain as she swiped her tongue directly across one of the claw marks. These were offset however by the pleasurable feelings emanating from Eric as she licked the blood off his body. After she had finished, she snuggled tightly against him.

"I am so happy to be with you again." she finally said.

"I am happy that you are back too." Eric said as he wrapped one arm around her and gently stroked her ear with the other hand.

After a couple of minutes he asked, "When do you have to be back at the Temple?"

Alara, who was slowly dozing off due to the warmth of his body against hers, drowsily replied, "Noon tomorrow."

"Ah, no rush then." he said.

She slowly shook her head and draped her tail across his body. She nuzzled against his chest and it was not a minute later that Eric could feel her body go completely limp and her breathing become deep and steady. He knew that she was asleep.

He kissed the tips of her ears and whispered, "I love you, my little dizyntk."

He then let the warmth of her body lull him into slumber as well.

The dizyntk year, cyanka, is divided into sixteen months which each have four eight day weeks. These days are slightly longer than earth days, one and half hours longer to be precise. This gives a total of 512 dizyntk days, or 544 human days, in every cyanka. This is basic learning in dizyntk schools of course, although the human equivalency is new, and school was just getting back into session.

The school cyanka for dizyntk primary and secondary schools is divided into three eighteen week periods with six days out of every eight day week being a school day. Each school cyanka begins in the first month of the cyanka. There is a two week break between the first and second periods and another between the second and third. A six week break comes between the end of one grade and the beginning of the next. Generally, primary schooling begins the first full cyanka after a dizyntk turns four and lasts five cyankas. Secondary education starts at age nine and lasts another three cyankas. This gives the average dizyntk eight cyankas of compulsory education.

Ariarisha's birthday happens to fall in the two week break between the second and third periods. Lilavasi was now attending the same school, but she was in the grade above Aria as she was a cyanka older. They had both attended their respective classes all day. At the end of the day, Lilavasi made her way to the section of the school that held the classes for Aria's grade. She was not going there to see Aria however.

Ariarisha had brought Lilavasi to the school every day for the past five days on order to make sure that Vasi could find her way from her classroom to Aria's. They also made sure that she could find the one she was now going to. It had been arranged for Vasi to leave her own class a little early every day so as to be able to go to Aria's class before the halls were full of students. Since the school was only a kilometer from the entrance of the Palace grounds, Aria would then walk with her to go home. While they would do that most days, this first day of the new period was different. Aria was in an after school fazilk (a dizyntk ball game) club and was attending that today. She would do so twice a week every week of school. They both thought it the perfect opportunity for Vasi to get to know someone else a little better. They had failed to inform the other dizyntk about this, but Aria was sure this would pose no problem.

Lilavasi reached the open door of the classroom just before the end of day bell rang. She knocked twice on the door frame to get everyone's attention. Just then the bell rang and Vasi waited. As soon as it finished, she heard the voice she had been hoping to hear.

Revanirin Niltinika, along with the rest of his class, looked at the doorway when they heard the knocking. Unlike the others in his class, he recognized her.

As soon as the bell stopped, he said, "Aria's class is another four doors to your left, Lilavasi."

Vasi smiled. "Thank you. But I am at the correct classroom. I am here to speak to you, Revanirin."

Revan looked surprised at this. "Me?"

"Yes." Vasi replied. "Row and desk?"

It took Revan a moment to look and count. "Second row, fourth desk."

Vasi nodded and entered the room, gracefully using her hand to count the rows, turn, and do the same up the row to Revan's desk. The rest of the class had not moved an inch. While none of them knew Lilavasi personally, they all knew who she was. She was the granddaughter of an Empress after all and everyone was curious as to why she was here to talk to Revanirin.

She reached Revan's desk and he stood as she arrived. "Is something wrong, Lilavasi?"

"Just a minor thing." Vasi said. "Aria forgot that she had her fazilk club after school today. I do not really wish to sit there for two hours and listen to them play. Could I impose on you to walk with me back to the palace?"

"Of course, Lilavasi, no imposition at all." he answered without hesitation.

At this the other dizyntk in the class began getting up and leaving the classroom to go home. They had been hoping for something more interesting but they all knew that Revan lived on the palace grounds and was friends with Ariarisha. Lilavasi asking him to walk her home in Aria's place was not a big deal. Revan quickly gathered his things, slung his bag over his left shoulder and took Lilavasi's hand to put it on his right arm.

"Ready to go?" Revan asked.

"I am." Vasi replied.

The two of them walked easily through the school and out onto the sidewalk leading to the palace grounds. Vasi lightly held onto his sleeve as they walked. Revan had to slow his normal pace a little as he made sure to give things a wider berth than normal for Lilavasi's sake. In doing this, he actually matched Lilavasi's normal walking speed without really trying to do so. As they got onto the sidewalk and away from the crowd of students around the school, Vasi got closer to Revan and wrapped her arm around his in a friendlier manner. She would have done this at first, but she was sure it would have embarrassed him even more than it probably already did.

Her action had indeed caused Revan to blush a little. "Lilavasi, what are you doing?"

"Hmm?" she queried as she nuzzled his upper arm.

This caused his blush to increase exponentially. "Lilavasi!"

She laughed a bit at his discomfort but did not change the friendly way she was holding his arm. "I just decided that we need to get to know each other better, Revanirin."

"I see." Revan said as he looked around nervously. "But you are the granddaughter of the Empress and I am..."

"Just the son of a palace servant?" Lilavasi finished for him. "My grandmother is no longer Empress. And regarding higher social standing," she stopped walking, leaned in close to Revan's ear and whispered, "that did not stop you from becoming so close with Aria in the past half cyanka or so."

Revan cleared his throat a bit. "Oh, well, um, yes, that is..." he muttered out.

Vasi laughed at this. "You are cute when you're embarrassed."

"Thanks." he said. "I think."

"Do you know the tea house across the street from the palace gates?" Vasi asked after they had started walking again.

"Sure I do." Revan answered. "Most everyone does but I've never been inside it."

This was unsurprising as the small establishment was a bit expensive and very exclusive. It was unlikely that anyone of Revanirin's social standing would be allowed in if he was not working there. Unless, of course, he was accompanying someone like Lilavasi, who would have no problem at all getting in.

"Good." Vasi said, continuing to lightly nuzzle his arm. "We have things to discuss, you and I, and I would prefer to do so in a quiet, comfortable spot. The Sapphire Tea House is an excellent place for that. You will accompany me there."

Revan nodded to himself. He was nervous enough at Vasi's unexpected flirtations. The thought of going into such a famous and exclusive establishment only helped to elevated this. He was completely unconcerned about the expense however. Among dizyntk it was accepted as a matter of course that, when one invited another to go someplace, the inviter was also agreeing to pay. Vasi's words sounded more like a command than an invitation, but the premise still held. Not that this helped calm him at all.

The Sapphire Tea House did not really serve "tea" as humans generally understand the term. Dizyntk use an entirely different plant of course. The process of making the beverage is quite similar, however, in that the leaves of a particular plant are steeped in hot water. Dizyntk tea is red in color after being steeped. Generally speaking, the darker the red of the finished product, the higher the quality of plant used to prepare it. The best Dizyntk teas have a color almost that of dark blood when properly prepared. The flavor, while stronger than that produced by the Camellia sinensis plant, is remarkably similar. It is served hot, warm or chilled, depending on season or individual preference. Serving tea over ice never caught on with the Dizyntk. The Sapphire Tea House was renowned for the quality of the tea it served as well as for the food items accompanying it.

Revan opened the door to the Tea House for Lilavasi. They both walked the short distance to the hostess, an older female dizyntk dressed in impeccable robes of an elegant, older style. She eyed the two of them warily as they approached. It was not unusual for younger ones of little or no standing to try and get into the Tea House just to see if they could. Then again, the older dizyntk also knew that the nearby school had many children of wealthy and noble families in attendance. Since they were all required to wear the same uniforms to school, as these two were wearing, it was never a good idea to rush to any conclusions.

"Welcome to the Sapphire Tea House, young ones." she said pleasantly. "I am Keriasani, the host. May I help the two of you?"

Lilavasi had been to the Tea House on any number of occasions through the cyankas, but not in the weeks since she had moved here. Nonetheless, she knew Keriasani, as the older dizyntk had been the host here for the entire time Vasi had been coming here. Lilavasi knew that the lady had never seen her in school clothes before though.

"Lilavasi Asarazyntk and guest." Vasi said with a smile.

Keriasani looked closely and almost growled at herself for not recognizing Vasi. "My apologies, Lady Lilavasi. I did not recognize you in those clothes."

She came out from behind her podium and took Vasi's hands in hers. "But why are you wearing the uniform of our local school?"

"Because, as of two weeks ago, I am living at the palace with Ariarisha." Vasi told her.

"Then I will be seeing you more often, My Lady." she said happily.

"That you shall, Keriasani." Vasi said.

Vasi reached out towards Revan and he gently took her hand. "This is my friend, Revanirin. Normally Aria will be walking me home but she had prior commitments today. Revan was kind enough to fill in for her and make sure I arrived at the palace safely. I insisted that we come here on the way so that I could express my gratitude."

"Of course, Lady Lilavasi, of course." the host said with a bow of her head. "Follow me and I will take you to one of the rooms."

They followed the hostess to one of the small rooms located throughout the Tea House. They were each designed to seat up to four customers comfortably. Walls could be slid out of the way to combine rooms for larger parties.

"Your usual tea, Lady Lilavasi?" the hostess asked.

"Yes, for both of us. Also the light pastry sampler for two." Vasi answered.

She bowed her head and left the two of them to go place the order.

"Now then." Lilavasi said to Revan. "For the next hour we shall leisurely get to know each other better. Shall we start with respective stories of Ariarisha?"

For the first time since this started, Revan laughed. "That's a great idea. Since we are her two oldest friends, does that mean we can share those stories we have been sworn to take to our graves?"

Lilavasi joined in laughing at the idea. "An excellent suggestion, Revan."

Vasi brought her hand to her mouth. "It is alright if I call you Revan, isn't it?"

"Of course it is." Revan replied. "That means I get to call you, um, Vasi?"

He said this last part a bit nervously.

Vasi nodded. "I understand if you do not wish to in public. When we are in private like we are now, however, I will insist on it."

"As you wish, My La ... err, Vasi." he said.

They then began sharing those stories about Ariarisha that she would probably have scratched them both open for revealing. Given that they had both known her for five cyankas, this took the entire hour. Lilavasi insisted that in three days, when Aria had her next club meeting, they were going to return and continue where they left off.

Veenalara was breathing hard, but she was still standing despite the intensity of the workout she had just undergone this morning. She had bragged that her fitness level was very good but the past two hours had made her question that assumption. Still, she was happy that her training officer was slowly nodding in grudging admiration of her ability to have made it this far without collapsing.

"It appears that you were correct about your level of fitness, Sister." Virathea said. "It is quite good for a Priestess."

Virathea then tilted her head to the side slightly and smiled. "Of course, I am not saying that it is good enough for a Royal Guard warrior quite yet."

Veenalara nodded in agreement and, between breaths, said, "Yes ... you ... are ... right ... Colonel."

Virathea had gone through the exact same workout along with Veenalara and was not breathing even half as hard. Veenalara knew that she was from a warrior house, but she also knew how bad the wounds Virathea had suffered had been. That she was in such good shape just over a cyanka afterwards was amazing. It just made Veenalara want to try all that much harder. She had been a warrior herself after all, though of a different type.

"I would say that, given another four months of these twice a week sessions, you should be as fit as I am." Virathea observed. "Maybe not even that long if you work out some on your own."

"Thanks for that vote of confidence." Veenalara said, her breathing finally calming down.

"Luckily for you, I cannot do the full daily training schedule quite yet." Virathea said with a smile.

Veenalara's eyes widened in disbelief. "There is supposed to be more!?"

"Indeed there is, Sister, about twice as much." Virathea assured her. "But my healer, Sister Oriakana, would have my hide if she heard I was attempting that much right now. That or she would make sure that my bonded mate would, which would be worse. So we will have to make due with half training for about another half cyanka."

"I thought I was already in very good shape." Alara said. "I see that I was wrong."

Virathea stepped up to her and put a hand on Veenalara's shoulder. "Do not feel too bad, Sister Veenalara. Our training is some of the most physically demanding of any of the Dizyntk military forces. Only the Zyrestrim are in better shape than the average Royal or Imperial Guardsman, and even then only fractionally so."

Alara hung her head. "I think I might die."

Virathea laughed at this. "I think not, Sister. By the time that I am fit enough to complete the full training regimen, you shall be as well. As I said, you are quite fit for a Priestess. You would easily pass the normal military fitness requirements right now."

Alara nodded in agreement. She did not know if Virathea was telling her the truth or not but, for right now, she would choose to believe that she was.

"Thank you for your praise. Allow me to get you a drink, colonel." Veenalara said.

"As you wish, Sister. I am definitely thirsty." Virathea said.

Alara went to the vending machine located at the back of the Royal Guard barracks that they had been training near. She purchased two cans of juice, returned to Virathea and tossed one of the cans to her. They both sat on the ground under a nearby tree and took a long drink.

"I understand that you are bonded to a human, Colonel." Veenalara said

"I am indeed, Sister." Virathea confirmed. "Although if you had told me two cyankas ago that I would be, I would have doubted your sanity. Why do you ask?"

"I have known Eric for over a cyanka, I suppose. But in truth, thanks to having to train on Lilac, I have actually only been with him for a month or so." Alara explained. "I was just wondering if they make good mates over the long term."

Virathea chuckled at the question. "That is the same as asking if a dizyntk makes a good mate. That depends on the human as much as it does the dizyntk. I have learned that to my benefit."

"I suppose you are right." Alara said. "It does seem that my having a human lover is easily accepted here. I would imagine that has much to do with Princess Feyalisa having a human as a bonded mate."

"That it does, Sister." Virathea said. "The populace of Sapphire, and Sapphire City in particular, has had five cyankas to adjust to the idea that humans and dizyntk can not only be bonded but also interbreed."

Virathea then smiled and said, "That being said, Sister Veenalara, I hope you have had your contraceptive implant renewed."

Veenalara nodded and laughed at the insinuation. "I was quite relieved that I was not in estrus when I first had sex with Eric a cyanka ago. I had no idea that our species were mutually compatible like that until after the fact."

"And he did not think to tell you of this?" Virathea said in disbelief.

"Not until the next day. It apparently slipped his mind that I might not have an up to date implant." Alara said. "He was most apologetic about it."

"I should hope so." Virathea said. "Stupid males. Always thinking with the wrong part of their body."

"When in close contact with one we desire, are we so different?" Alara asked with a grin.

Virathea took a sip while pondering her feelings towards Cynthia. She smiled a bit to herself and replied, "I suppose not too different."

Virathea looked at Alara. "That reminds me, my mate wishes to meet the two of you. It seems she knows Eric Wolf."

"She does?" Alara asked.

"Apparently they were on the same transport vessel when they arrived on Elishen. She was his immediate superior." Virathea said.

"I see. Does she know about me? About what I am that is?" Alara asked.

Virathea shook her head. "No she does not. Not fully anyway. She knows that you have been in stasis for quite some time, that you have been required to join the Royal Guard for some reason and that this reason has to do with some unusual training you were given before you were put into stasis. She does not know about your powers and I would prefer to keep it that way."

"I understand, Colonel." Alara said with a concerned look. "Are you sure we can keep it from her?"

"Good question." Virathea admitted. "My Cynthia is quite astute and lies are not likely to get by her easily. Perhaps we can just say that we have been told not to talk about it."

"The truth, in other words. At least as far as it goes." Alara said with a smile

"Exactly." Virathea said. "She is military as well and understands that there are some things I cannot discuss with her."

"Very good then. I will explain that to Eric." Alara said as she stood up. "Is tomorrow evening good for you?"

"Yes it is." Virathea said as she stood as well. "Cynthia gets home tonight and is scheduled to be home for the next three days."

Alara nodded. "And my Eric is not supposed to go on his next run for two days."

"Tomorrow it is." Virathea agreed.

"Where?" Alara asked.

"My quarters at the palace." Virathea said. "Say about six in the evening?"

"Six it is then." Alara said.

With that they said their goodbyes. Both went to take a shower and eat breakfast before returning to their normal duties.

About eight that night, Ariarisha walked down the corridor leading from her mother's quarters to the elevator that would take her to the ground floor of the southern end of the Palace. She was smiling as normal and greeting those servants and guards she passed. Inside, however, she was quite nervous. Not in a bad way necessarily, just at the prospect of going to do something she had not done before. Two things actually, but they were connected. She could still hear Lilavasi's voice in her head.

"You must go and properly thank Revan for seeing me home yesterday." she had told her.

When Aria had asked what she had meant by properly, Vasi just snickered and said that she was sure Aria could figure it out if she tried. Indeed she had figured it out, but before she could protest, Vasi bid her goodnight and began to leave.

"Where are you going?" Aria had asked.

"To spend the night with my grandmother. It has been too long since I have snuggled with her." Vasi then waved her tail at Aria as she walked away.

Aria argued halfheartedly at her receding back and almost went after her as she left their room, but knew it would do little good. Vasi seemed determined for Aria to get closer to Revan. In truth Aria wanted to as well, although she had been reluctant to admit it. Now she was walking towards the servants' quarters on the south side of the palace. She had been to Risakala's quarters many times. Her son, Revanirin, had been her friend for five cyankas after all. As she exited the Palace itself and saw the building containing the servant quarters, however, she stopped cold. She went over her feelings for Revan and asked herself if she honestly wanted to be closer friends with him. It took her only a few seconds to answer herself. As soon as she thought about the last time she had kissed Revan, her body gave her its answer as well. She began walking again, although this time her smile was quite genuine. It was not her normal carefree smile but rather a more lustful and provocative one.

Aria walked into the servant's building and made her way to the top floor of the four story building. She exited the elevator and walked down the hallway to the door of Risakala's quarters. Aria knew that Risakala was still back at in her mother's quarters and would not be home for another hour. She pushed the ringer button next to the door. It only took several seconds for the door to open. Much to her delight, it was Revan who answered the door.

"Good evening, Revan." she said.

Revan looked and saw that she was alone. "Aria? What are you doing here so late? Is something wrong?"

"Nothing at all." she replied. "I just wanted to talk to you. May I come in?"

"Sure, I guess." he said with a bit of confusion. "Come on in."

"What do you want to talk about?" he asked.

"Let's go to your room first." Aria replied and started walking that way.

"Aria, wait up." Revan said as he closed the door.

Aria walked quickly and reached Revan's room before he finally caught up with her. As soon as he did, she turned and put two fingers on his lips before he could ask any questions. She reached past him and closed the door.

"I came here to thank you for looking after Lilavasi yesterday." Aria said

"You could have done that at school tomorrow." Revan said.

Aria slowly shook her head. "I do not think the teachers would be happy with either of us if I did this there."

At that she put a hand on the back of his head, pulled him closer to her and kissed him. Softly at first, she did not take long to begin kissing more aggressively. She nibbled lightly on his lips, slid her tongue into his mouth and wrapped her other arm and tail around his body.

Surprised by the suddenness of Aria's actions, Revan hesitated at first. It did not take long for him to start returning the affections that Aria was lavishing on him. They kissed and held each other for a couple of minutes before Aria finally pulled back a little.

"It has been too long since I have done that with you." she said softly.

"I agree." Revan said with a smile.

Aria then wrapped her arms around him and hugged him tightly. She nuzzled his neck and inhaled the odor of his scent glands. The reaction of her body to his scent only served to confirm that she did indeed want to do this.

"I want you to mate with me, Revan." she said, her voice hoarse with desire.

"What? Are you sure?" he asked. There was no doubt in Revan's mind that he wanted to have sex with Aria. He was just a bit hesitant due to the difference in their social class. Then again he had been her friend for half his life and this difference was often lost on him. His mother, on the other hand...

Aria kissed his neck, then his cheek and finally his lips once more. "Very sure."

And at that all hesitancy vanished from Revan's mind. He simply nodded his assent which caused Aria to smile brightly.

Aria took his hand and slowly walked backwards towards his bed. As she felt the edge of the mattress hit the back of her knees, she fell backwards and pulled Revan on top of her. She licked, kissed and nipped him as he slowly removed her clothing. They rolled over with Aria on top so that she could help remove his as well. As soon as she removed that last article, she gently stroked her hand across Revan's already stiff cock.

"So this is what you look like down there." Aria said happily.

Revan was unable to form words at the moment. He was running his hands slowly up and down Aria's torso. He traced the light fur strips along her ribs, lightly ran his claws up her abdomen and gently squeezed her firm breasts. He had dreamt of being with Aria for almost a cyanka. Now here she was, completely naked, on top of him, in his bed, ready to mate with him.

Aria leaned down and kissed him deeply and softly on the lips. She raised her hips and positioned him at her entrance. Then she slowly pushed down until he was completely inside her. The two of them moaned into each others mouths as it slid in.

She broke the kiss and rose up, her hands resting on his chest as her vaginal muscles clamped down on his member. "Oh Goddess, Revan. That's filling me up so much."

"I've wanted you so much." he said as he grabbed hold of her hips and gave a short up and down thrust.

Aria extended her claws into Revan's chest and growled a bit. "Not so fast. Let me get used to it first. It's thicker than Vasi's tail."

Revan eyes went wide as he realized that he was her first male, even though he probably should have known that. "Sorry." he said.

Aria leaned back down and kissed him again. "It's alright."

She slowly rocked her hips back and forth and could feel herself getting more comfortable around his cock. As she did so, the pleasure increased greatly. Shortly, she started riding up and down, relishing the feeling of him sliding in and out of her. She looked down at him, smiled and nodded.

Revan began to thrust his hips, trying to match Aria's movements. They were awkward at first, as was only to be expected, but soon found a good rhythm. It did not take long for Revan to feel his orgasm rising.

"Aria, I think..." he managed to say.

"Go ahead, shoot your seed inside me." she said. Her head was tilted back and her hips were moving faster.

Revan pulled her down suddenly and held her there as he let out a sharp yelp. His cock swelled and he felt the incredible sensation of his cum rocketing out into Aria's pussy.

Aria felt it as well. The swelling of the cock inside her, the throbbing of it and the hot, slick sensation of his seed filling her. She moaned in pleasure from it. As soon as he finished, she felt his grip on her hips loosen considerably and she began slowly riding up and down again. It took Revan a minute to catch his breath but, to Aria's delight, he did not soften in the slightest.

Revan grabbed Aria and rolled her onto her back. He then began thrusting into her with slow full strokes.

Aria mewled in pleasure at this and wrapped her arms, legs and tail around him. She used her legs to pull her hips up firmly to meet his downward thrusts. After several minutes, she could feel her body begin to tingle all over and she knew she was close.

Revan felt her grip on him tighten and he increased his speed. Aria's claws dug into his shoulders and she locked her legs tightly around his hips.

Aria felt the orgasm sweep over her body. Her muscles locked, her head tipped back and she let out a high pitched howl as she came.

Revan waited for her climax to subside before he started to slowly thrust into her again. His earlier orgasm allowed him to withstand the milking Aria's pussy was giving him, trying to coax another load out of him.

As soon as Aria regained her senses, she could feel that Revan was still mating with her. She smiled and whispered, "Roll back over."

Revan did just that, holding on to her so that they did not separate.

Aria leaned down and kissed him for a while as her hips rocked up and down on him. She straightened up and began riding in a slow gyrating motion while running her hands up and down her own body. She occasionally leaned down to kiss Revan or lick his neck and ears. After several more minutes, she could once again feel an orgasm working its way to the surface. She increased the speed of her hips and felt Revan do the same.

Revan knew he was close. He could tell that Aria was as well. There was no way he would be able to resist the demands of her body this time. He wrapped his hands around her waist and helped pull her down harder each time he thrust up into her.

"Revan, Revan." Aria said breathlessly as her body began to tense and her head tilted all the way back.

"Aria!" Revan growled out just as he felt the first firm squeeze of her pussy which caused him to finally lose it.

He pulled her down and thrust up hard. He howled as he came even harder than last time, pumping his seed deep inside Aria's clenching pussy.

The feeling of Revan's cum filling her once more tripped the trigger of her climax and Aria howled at the top of her lings, the sound mixing with Revan's howling. After almost a minute, Aria finally lost all strength in her body and fell on top of Revan.

Revan wrapped his arms around Aria as soon as she fell on him. They were both breathing very hard. Neither of them said anything for several minutes, until after their breathing returned to normal.

Aria nuzzled his neck. "That was amazing."

"Really amazing." Revan agreed.

"It will be a shame to have to share you." Aria said.

"What do you mean?" he asked.

"I mean that there are several others at school that want to play with you as well." Aria said as she slid off of him and snuggled next to him on the bed.

Revan rolled to his side as she did this and kept both arms around her. "Several? I know there are maybe one or two."

Aria giggled at this. She ran a claw gently around his chest. "More like five or six, mister modest."

"No way." he said.

Aria smiled wickedly and pulled his head down so she could whisper in his ear. "I will be extra nice to you and tell you one that you would never guess. I have it on good authority that Taylirian thinks you are very cute."

His eyes widened at this. Taylirian was the daughter of a wealthy merchant. She was shy and studious. She was also very pretty. "She does? I mean we have never even so much as kissed."

"But, from what I hear, you always help her when she has to bring books for the class from the library or take them back." Aria pointed out.

"Well yes, but..." he said.

"But nothing, you sexy dizyntk. Go and ask her out tomorrow and you will see. I promise." she said before kissing him again.

She then wrapped her arms around Revan's head and gently pulled his face to her chest so that he could nuzzle her breasts as she nuzzled the top of his head. Revan felt her tail drape across his waist and her legs intertwine with his.

He let his tail do the same across her waist and said, "If I didn't know any better, I would think you were going to sleep here tonight."

"That I am." Aria said, her voice already beginning to sound drowsy. "Vasi is with her grandmother and besides, you are very warm and we have not slept together in such a long time."

With that being said, she snuggled up to him even tighter.

"But if my mother..." he started to say before changing his mind. "To heck with it. She has to find out sooner or later."

He then nuzzled happily against Aria's breasts and let himself relax and enjoy the warmth of her flesh against his.

"Exactly." Aria agreed sleepily before she let herself succumb to slumber.

It took little time for Revan's sex drained body to follow her.


Imperial Edict Ninety-Four

I, Ziniadyra Asarazyntk, Empress of the Dizyntk Grand Imperium, do hereby decree that Veenalara Terkanlin Hestafala Thersin is to be exempt from the dictates of Imperial Edict Three, pursuant to the restrictions outlined below. The exemption being specifically to those parts of Imperial Edict Three dealing with the disposition of militarily trained Priestesses of the Orders of the Temple of the Goddess and to those with training to use the mental powers usually ascribed to those individuals known as Faylantkrana.

It is recognized that under Imperial Edict Three it is a class one felony to train a Priestess in any military art and a class two felony, a capital offense, to train any individual, Priestess or not, in the use of powers ascribed to those individuals known as Faylantkrana. Furthermore, Imperial Edict Three mandates that any individual receiving said Faylantkrana training be detained on the monastery planet of Lilac for the duration of that individual's life. This being said, it is recognized that the aforementioned Veenalara Thersin received her training prior to the restrictions issued via Imperial Edict Three. Because of this, it has been decided to grant her special dispensation to remain free of detention so long as she observes the following restrictions.

1) She shall undergo full and complete training, on the planet Lilac, commensurate with that of a Priestess of the Orders. Such training is to be administered by the Head Priestess of Lilac and those of her aides that she deems suitable to assist in the training.

2) She shall also undergo training on Lilac to insure that she can maintain the utmost control of her Faylantkrana powers. Such training is to be administered by the above mentioned Priestesses who shall also be exempted from the dictates of Imperial Edict Three in this specific case.

3) The training outlined above must be completed to the satisfaction of both the Head Priestess of the planet Lilac and the Head Priestess of the Silver Order in her capacity as the Head of the Council of Major Orders. Such review is to take place one cyanka from the beginning of training. If unsatisfactory, another review will be given a cyanka after the first and once a cyanka after that, if needed, until training has been deemed satisfactory by the aforementioned Priestesses. Until both these Priestesses agree on the above mentioned points, Veenalara Thersin will not be allowed to leave the planet Lilac.

4) After being granted permission to leave Lilac, Veenalara Thersin will be transported directly to the planet Sapphire. Once there, she will be assigned to live and serve at the Royal Temple at the Sapphire Palace for a minimum of two cyankas. She will not be allowed to leave the planet Sapphire during this period. She will be allowed, at the discretion of the Head Priestess of the Royal Temple, to travel on and about the planet Sapphire itself.

5) Upon arriving on Sapphire, Veenalara Thersin will be assigned to the Sapphire Royal Guard as a special assistant to the Guard. As such, an Officer of the Sapphire Royal Guard will be assigned by the Commanding Officer of the Sapphire Royal Guard to maintain her training. This officer shall be exempt from the dictates of Imperial Edict Three in this specific case. Veenalara Thersin may only be used in combat by the Guard on the order of either the Queen of the Second Star Cluster or the Commanding Officer of the Sapphire Royal Guard. She may be used as a personal protection agent so long as one of the aforementioned individuals agrees and that she not leave Sapphire prior to the two cyanka restriction mentioned above. Knowledge of the fact that she is a member of the Sapphire Royal Guard will be restricted to the individuals named in section 7 below. Due to her training and powers, Veenalara Thersin shall remain attached to the Sapphire Royal Guard until such time as she is dismissed from that service by the Queen of the Second Star Cluster.

6) Two cyankas after her arrival on the planet Sapphire, it will be left to the discretion of the Head Priestess of the planet Sapphire and the Queen of the Second Star Cluster as to whether or not Veenalara Thersin shall be allowed to leave her residence at the Temple and/or travel off world. If granted permission to travel to other planets, Veenalara Thersin will be required to inform the Head Priestess of the Sapphire Royal Temple of her intended destination before her departure, give an estimate of her time of return and inform said Head Priestess upon her return. Such information is to be sent to all the individuals outlined in section 7 below, although Veenalara Thersin need not wait for these notifications to be delivered to begin any allowed travel. Only the Empress of the Dizyntk Grand Imperium may grant Veenalara Thersin permission to permanently reside on any planet other than Sapphire.

7) Official knowledge of Veenalara Thersin's abilities as a Faylantkrana shall be restricted to the following individuals; The Empress of the Dizyntk Grand Imperium, The Queen of the Second Star Cluster, The Head Priestesses of the Silver, Star, Ivory, Jade and Nebula Orders, The Head Priestess of the planet Lilac, The Head Priestess of the planet Sapphire, The Commanding Officer of the Sapphire Royal Guard, The Royal Guard Officer responsible for her continued training and The Head Priestess of the Sapphire Palace Royal Temple.

8) Any others that learn of said powers through happenstance will not be considered in violation of any laws of the Imperium so long as they agree to keep said knowledge to themselves. Any individual found to be disseminating, or attempting to disseminate, any information regarding Veenalara Thersin's powers to those not mentioned in section seven of this Edict will be guilty of a class one, level four felony.

9) Veenalara Thersin may use her Faylantkrana powers for the defense of herself, the Temple and its Priestesses, the Royal Palace and its occupants or other Dizyntk, any of whom are deemed by authorities to have been threatened with deadly force. She may use her powers for other reasons only by permission of The Empress of the Dizyntk Grand Imperium, The Queen of the Second Star Cluster or The Commanding Officer of the Sapphire Royal Guard. If said powers are used at any other time, Veenalara Thersin will be in violation of this edict granting her exemption from Imperial Edict Three. At such time the full dictates of Imperial Edict Three will be enforced and she will be taken to the planet Lilac and kept there for the rest of her natural life.

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Ma/Fa / mt/ft / ft/ft / Consensual / Romantic / Science Fiction / First /