Chapter 20 - Taking Shelter (19+)
It was a reality completely different from what she had been taught. One that she had only been exposed to after becoming a maid. It took her falling headfirst into this world to realize how superficial her knowledge was.
“I see a cave over there. Let’s use it to hide from the rain for a bit,” Eli spoke loudly, startling Edna from her thoughts.
Without waiting for a reply, Eli guided the horse to the cave with quick steps. The cave had a damp smell, which provoked a fit of sneezing on Edna. Hugging herself in an attempt to warm her drenched body, Edna approached Eli, who was lighting a fire.
“If I were alone, I’d have just run up to the castle,” Eli muttered to himself as he rushed to make a fire for Edna, whose blue lips were trembling.
“I’m sorry I’m with you,” Edna said, a little timidly.
Eli huffed. “You really don’t know how to retreat. Still talking back to me,” he replied coldly.
“I’m sorry, but you could’ve fallen off your horse even if you were riding alone.”
“Well, that’s true.”
Eli gathered dry branches around the cave and started a fire. Edna was crouched near him and, soon after, warmth began spreading around them. With a sigh, Edna squeezed some water out of her wet clothes. Suddenly, she heard a rustle behind her. Turning around, she discovered it was Eli, attempting to help her remove her clothes.
“You’ll catch a cold if you continue to wear wet clothes, so why don’t you just take them off?” Eli suggested.
“But if I take these off, what will I…?” Edna turned around to ask him, only to discover Eli had already taken off his clothes. She stared at him, mouth open. His naked body was riddled with knife cuts, giving her a terrible insight into what type of person she married. Her eyes unconsciously traced every scar on his skin.
Meanwhile, Eli busied himself with undressing her. Now was not the time for modesty; their wet clothes could easily lead to a fever. Embarrassed, Edna tried to cover herself and turned around. That was when Eli saw her back.
His eyes widened in disbelief. Her back was covered in long faded whipping scars that he had failed to notice on the previous night. How dare they whip my woman to this sorry state?
“Maybe it was an opportunity for you, too,” Eli spoke, unconscious of his rising rage.
“What?” Edna asked. She was squatting near the fire and trying unsuccessfully to cover herself with her knees.
Eli sat on his knees beside her and stroked her back, which was shivering from the cold. “The remaining marks on your body give me a good idea of how you lived there. You were really beaten brutally. Was this the reason you said you wanted to live?”
Only then did Edna realize what he meant. She moistened her dry lips but didn’t reply. Eli sat behind Edna and embraced her. His body temperature, when in contact with her body, seemed to help her warm up. “You’re my wife now. I will make sure this never happens to you again.” He vowed.
Why do this woman’s scars feel so painful? Eli thought inwardly and pulled her further into his embrace.
Keeping her head down, Edna muttered, “The whipping wasn’t that bad. Being in a situation where I couldn’t retaliate even as I was flogged was much more painful.”
“But there was nothing you could do about it. So, how’d you live in the viscount’s castle?” Eli replied with a tilt of his head.
Edna shut her mouth and gave no answer. Talking to him wouldn’t erase the past, and she didn’t want to recall those miserable times.
His body suddenly stiffened. Then Eli grabbed her roughly, intending to confirm that the previous night’s pleasure hadn’t been an illusion. However, his target flinched and slapped away his hand almost in reflex.
Surprised by having his hand slapped away by a woman for the first time in his life, he grabbed her by the chin and made her face him, growling out, “Not only do you talk back but now you even hit my hand?”
“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to…” Edna quietly apologized and lowered her gaze to avoid his sharp eyes.
“You say you’re sorry? After daring to hit me?” Eli mumbled, laying her down on a cold stone. “If you weren’t my woman, I would have hit you back.”
She widened her eyes and looked at his face as he groped her secret place with one hand, staring deep into her eyes. Closing her eyes, Edna but her lower lip in shame. But as his caresses continued, a strange feeling rose within her. Starting from her center, a wave of heat spread through her body, making her flush red from head to toe. Edna unconsciously clenched her fists.
“What a strange skin. I can’t believe you can turn all red like this.” He teased, but Edna couldn’t say anything in reply. The moment she opened her mouth, she suspected a moan would burst out, thanks to the strange feeling.
Seeing her bite her lips, Eli narrowed the gap between them and gently inserted his tongue inside her mouth. He took the opportunity to table his tongue with hers, stealing a gasp from his wife in the process.
Eli continued caressing her with his other hand while he gave her a deep kiss. Once he felt her petals were moist enough, he buried himself inside her flower, eyes never leaving her face. Her tight womanhood felt incredibly hot, sending him into a maddening spiral of pleasure.
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