A Christening Of Wild Apples
by Victoria P.

You can't say when it began. Perhaps it has always been so -- ordained by the gods before you were born, woven by the Fates and carved into your soul. It doesn't matter. You would have it no other way, would have chosen him even against the gods' will.

Your stomach flutters when he touches you, and blood roars in your ears. The others have already taken to teasing you about it when he is not around, sly and coarse in the manner of boys, and you manage to keep from making a fool of yourself in front of him, though you know he knows how you feel. He must know. You spend bitter hours in the night wondering, worrying, but by the rosy glow of dawn you know that you must wait, and let him do as he will. Sometimes, you think you may die of the waiting, and you imagine your hands are his when you touch yourself.

When you lie beside each other on a bed of leaves in your hidden bower, patches of sky bright and blue through the trees overhead, you think it is enough to simply be by his side. It must be enough. His hand brushes yours, warm and sure. You draw a shaky breath, the air rich with the scent of loam and rotting wood. You are cataloguing your body's response to his touch when he moves suddenly and straddles you, his chiton bunching up around his hips.

You have wrestled him many times, winning as often as you lose, never giving in because of who he is, holding his respect. You tell yourself this is the same, trying to ignore the soft flesh of his thighs rubbing against yours, heat kindling under your skin like Hephaestus' forge. Then he leans forward to kiss you, not the chaste kisses of friendship you've exchanged in the past, but a soft press of warm, full lips against yours, lingering, giving you time to respond, which you do. You slip a hand into his hair, which slides like golden silk against your fingers, gilded by the summer sunlight. You gasp, breathing him in, crisp and sweet as the apples he loves.

"Hephaistion," he murmurs against your mouth.

"Yes," you answer. You will always answer yes when he calls.

"Hephaistion," he says again, his eyes like silver flames beneath heavy lids.

"I'm here," you answer. You will always be where he is.

Another kiss, open-mouthed this time, his tongue fierce and hot against yours, headier than the finest wine, sending a lightning strike of need through you. His hands, deft and strong, push at your chiton so you are skin to skin. He is trembling slightly though his movements are confident, and this endears him to you even more. You gasp into his mouth as he rolls his hips, heat sliding against heat, so much better than you ever imagined. He rains kisses on your face, and soft words of love trip off your tongue; now there's nothing between you but sweat and skin, and promises of forever.

You move together, rolling like the tide, and where once you thought you'd die if he didn't touch you, now you think you'll die happily because he does. Pleasure surges through you as he takes your mouth again, pressing down as you thrust up, and then you're spilling yourself warm and wet over belly and thighs, the world gone up in white hot flames.

He is still moving, and you open your eyes to see him staring down at you, mouth open as he strains toward the release you've just experienced. You slide a hand between your bodies and stroke him as you would stroke yourself.

"Hephaistion," he cries out, throwing his head back as he comes undone under your touch.

He slumps against you; his head fits perfectly into the hollow of your neck, and you press kisses to his bright hair, holding him close, as close to being one person as two people can be, you think.

"The gods were with us," he murmurs against your neck, and you laugh, because it tickles, and because you believe it, too.

"Must the gods be involved in everything you do?" you tease, brushing damp hair off his forehead.

"Of course," he answers with a smile, his breath warm against your skin. "I'm Alexander."

There is only one possible answer, and you give it, pulling his face to yours for another kiss.


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