The bed loomed large behind her, an immense, ominous presence that left her hesitating, uncertain of the deal she had brokered with her groom. No time to take in the details of it, Lenneth saw just the size of it, before Lezard pushed her. She hadn't expected that, the move knocking her off balance, causing her to fall over backwards onto the silk sheets.

She heard the rustle of her skirt as she tried to sit up, raising up on her elbows to stare at Lezard. His eyes glinted behind his glasses, dark and intense as he moved forward, his lips spread into a smile. It was with eager quickness that he moved, the bed groaning in protest as he clambered onto it. She watched him crawl forward on his hands and knees, sliding into place a top of her. He scooted forward, his body hovering over hers as he moved, being careful to keep most of his weight off of her.

In an instant his hands were on her, skirting along her sides, a light tickling touch that Lenneth tolerated with a grimace. He was lowering his face, bringing his mouth to her shoulder, planting kisses there. "Mine..." Lenneth heard him whispered possessively. "All mine..."

"No.." denied Lenneth, but he was ignoring her, kissing along her bare skin, moving towards her neck. His lips brushed against the swatch of cloth at her throat, his tongue darting out to lick above it. Lenneth forced herself to be still, to try and tolerate his touch. Biting back a sigh, she stared over his shoulder at the ceiling, taking in the opaque tiles that revealed the night sky to her. A crystal chandelier hung down in the center of the room, the twinkle of starlight reflected over a thousand times in it's sheen. She thought to distract herself from what was going on by counting the dangling bits of jewels from that centerpiece, thought to distance herself from the feel of his lips on her throat.

But Lezard had other ideas, his lips biting down on the pulse point of her neck, the grazing of his teeth causing her to startle back to the situation at hand. He licked and nibbled at her neck, seeking to suck in time to the beat of her heart, even as his hands were moving on her body. This time they grazed the diamonds of her bodice, risked their hard edge to caress over her stomach.

He gave one last lick of her neck, tongue dragging wetly across her skin, and then another kiss on her neck. He planted kiss after kiss, she lost track of how many, feeling his mouth quiver against her skin, excitement vibrating within his body. His weight pressed down on her some more, and suddenly she was sinking down into the mattress, Lenneth being enveloped by it's softness. She was trapped between two contrasts, the soft yield of the bed, and the unmoveable hardness of Lezard's body.

Soft kisses on her jaw line, the mage slowly and sensuously working his way towards her mouth. His patient hands on her waist, still stroking her belly, as his mouth claimed hers, soft lips working to beguile her lips open. He kissed her with enough passion to make up for her lack of enthusiasm, Lenneth reluctant to show feelings to her groom.

She let out a gasp when his hands reached up to her chest, fingers squeezing her breasts through the bodice. Lezard seemed to eat up her sound, stealing her gasps, trying to make her breathless as his tongue danced into her mouth. Lenneth began moving, trying to squirm away from his groping hands, feeling white hot anger at his presumptuous touch.

Still kissing her, lips muffling her protests, he smooth his hands down to her sides, slightly lifting her up off the bed. It was only so that he could get a hand underneath her back, fingers brushing insistently against the ties of her bodice. He gave a tug, and the strings unraveled, bodice loosening over her breasts. Lenneth's temper flared, and she bit down on his tongue, Lezard letting out a garbled sound of pain, abruptly pulling back from her.

Anger danced in his amethyst eyes, his hand over his mouth as he mumbled, "What do you think you are doing?!"

Lenneth went to sit up, one hand holding her bodice to her, making sure the already low cut top didn't slip down any further. "You go to far!" Her anger matched his, cheeks burning pink as she thought of his fondling hands.

"We had a deal!" Lezard reminded her, and she slowly nodded her head in agreement. "Yes...we did. You said just a few touches...some kisses here and there. You have had it."

He frowned, lowering his hand from his mouth. "I've not yet had my fill of you!"

"Too bad." Lenneth said unsympathetic to his plight. "If you wanted more, you should have specified."

"I'll remember that for next time..." He promised, still wearing that frown.

"There won't be a next time." retorted Lenneth. He laughed at this, and now it was her turn to frown. "What's so funny...?"

"You."

"Me?" She knew the surprise shown in her eyes.

"Yes you." He nodded then, causing her frown to deepen. "So sure you are, so adamant. But you forget, I still hold SIlmeria's fate in my hand." Lezard explained, Lenneth's eyes narrowing in anger. She opened her mouth to speak, but he held up his hand for silence. "No, there will be other times. And perhaps, someday soon, there won't be a need for us to negotiate our...affection for each other."

"That will never happen." Lenneth swore, her breath coming out in a hiss.

"Never is a long time my dear." retorted Lezard. "And we have all of eternity to spend with each other." He reached out to touch her cheek, a light, airy caress against her skin. Lenneth raised her hand, knocking his arm away from her, a glare on her face. Sighing at that, Lezard eased up off the bed, hands smoothing down his rumpled jacket.

Watching him fiddle with the sleeves of his shirt, Lenneth scooted further back on the bed. She pressed her knees to her chest, using them to hold her bodice in place as she reached behind her back, fingers capturing the ties. Lenneth hastily retied the corset, making sure it was tight and in place, before assuming a more natural position on the bed. "Now what?" She asked him, seeing him turn to look at her.

"Now?" Lezard arched an eyebrow at her, repeating her question. A sigh escaped his lips. "I don't quite know." He admitted, much to her surprise. "I had expected by this time to be consummating our union...I hadn't given much thought on what we would do aside from that."

"You are far too consumed with the pleasures of the flesh, Lezard." noted Lenneth, her cheeks surely burning with the embarrassment she felt.

"Perhaps." Lezard gave a lazy shrug of his shoulders.

"...I have an idea." Lenneth said, when Lezard made no attempt to continue their discussion.

"Do tell."

"Why don't you show me this world of yours?" She asked hopefully.

"You're asking me to give you a tour?" Lezard mulled over the idea, and she nodded. "I suppose there's no harm in that." Lenneth allowed a small smile to cross her face, the first real one since her awakening. Lezard stared at her, transfixed by the expression, even as she made to get off of the bed.

"Shall we?" Lenneth asked, entwining her arm through his. She could see the surprise in his eyes, the man shocked that she had willingly touched him. He got over it quickly, smoothing his surprised features into an expression of mild amusement.

"Yes. Let's go." agreed Lezard, his free arm rising. Gold ether glowed up and down his arm, showers of sparkles trailing off his sleeve and onto the floor. He stretched out one long finger, pointing at the center of the room. The divine energy concentrated in his hand, racing down to his fingertip where it shot out, molding the air before them into a portal. It loomed before them, purple and gold energy forming the frame, a stark contrast to the inky blackness in the center of the portal.

Lenneth stared curiously into that darkness, feeling a chill wind that caused her to shiver even as it blew back her hair. She turned uncertain eyes at Lezard, wondering what lay beyond the blackness. Feeling her eyes on him, Lezard turned his head, giving her a sidelong glance before taking a step forward. She moved, hurrying to keep up with his long stride, not wanting to be left behind.

The closer they got to the portal, the fiercer the cold grew, an unnatural chill that was capable of affecting evem her divine body. It almost made Lenneth hesitate, make her want to say this was a bad idea, but Lezard was already stepping through the portal and she was left with no choice but to follow him.

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Freya was pacing, angry steps that walked her back and forth across the cracked marble floor. Her hands were held at her side, stiff and clenched in fists, her aura flaring up, shining as golden as her hair, and wound as tightly as her nerves. Occasionally her emerald eyes were drawn to the dais at the top of the stairs, staring at the throne which sat empty. Her heart flared with pain as she thought of the man who belonged a top that seat of honor, the God she had loved with all her might.

She was still staring at the throne with a look of longing in her eyes when Hrist approached her. She was not so consumed with her own private loss to allow anyone, mortal or divine to sneak up on her, Freya speaking without turning to face the Dark Valkyrie. "Hrist."

"Lady Freya..." Hrist smoothly dropped to one knee, armor clanking as she bowed.

"What news do you bring me?" Freya demanded, placing her hands on her hips.

"Nothing good." Hrist straightened, standing once more. "Lezard and my sister have vanished without a trace."

"That's impossible!" Freya whirled around, eyes flashing with rage. "Surely a mortal with his power..." Here her lips curled in distaste. "A newly made God would not be able to hide from us. Not for very long at any rate. The power alone should leave a palpable trail for us to follow!"

"And yet there is none." sighed Hrist. "Believe me I have searched, as have several of the Aesir. There is nothing to track."

"I won't accept this!" snarled the Fertility Goddess. "I can't! Lezard musn't be allowed to get away with his crimes!"

"Yes." agreed Hrist. "The mortal must be punished." Hrist, like so many of the other Gods still could scarcely believe that a simple mortal had staged a coup against the Gods. She could barely even begun to understand where he had gotten the power and the knowledge to displace Odin, but Hrist knew she didn't like it. "Freya..." Her voice softened just a touch, the Valkyrie reaching out to touch the blonde Goddess' shoulder. "We WILL find him..." She smiled then, a vicious twisting of her lips. "This I swear..."

"Than you Hirst." Freya nodded, realizing Hrist was perhaps even more dedicated to finding Lezard than she was. With two sisters claimed by the newly made God, she had to be.

"And who knows..." Hrist continued, her tone as close to reassuring as she could make it. "Perhaps Lenneth herself will act." She smirked then. "I can't imagine my sister is pleased with her current situation. She might seek to undermine Lezard's plans through more subtle ways..."

"Seduction is hardly Lenneth's forte." Freya pointed out.

"It doesn't matter." Hrist shook her head. "You said it yourself, the fool mage is enamored with her. It wouldn't take much skill to wrap him around her finger, and then..." She mimed snapping something in half, and Freya smiled, imagining it was Lezard's neck Hrist sought to break. "Everyone has a weak spot, even Gods." continued Hrist. "Perhaps Lenneth will prove to be Lezard's."

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Hair whipping madly about in the wind, Lenneth shivered and shook, crossing her arms over her chest. Heavy snow fell, thick flakes of white that all but obscured their surroundings, the crystal platforms blending in beneath their blanket of snow. The Valkyrie huddled closer to Lezard, hands rubbing her bare upper arms, trying to warm her skin. "Why have you brought me to such a barren place?" She shouted, forcing her voice to be heard over the wind. She envied Lezard's calm state, noting how the mage seemed unaffected by the cold.

Lezard turned to look at her, noticing her miserable state for the first time. His hands reached for the clasps of his cloak, and with a flourish he swept it off his back, bringing it forward to settle in over her bare shoulders. Lenneth clutched the ends of it gratefully, pulling it tight around her body.

"This is where intruders to my world first end up." Lezard said conversationally, the wind seeming to quiet down when he spoke.

"It certainly is inhospitable." agreed Lenneth, feeling slightly warmer enveloped in Lezard's cloak.

"It's meant to be." Lezard stated, and raised his hand. "I thought when faced with this, even the most hardened and heroic would turn back." The snow slowed, than stopped completely, responding to Lezard's silent command. Now Lenneth was able to get a better look at the pure white world, see the crystal platforms in their entirety. There were gaps between them, just wide enough for a mortal to jump, though the tops were slicked with ice, making such an endeavor dangerous. Jagged protrusions formed on the platforms, sharp ends, some of which already dripped with blood, causing Lenneth to wonder just who or what had been by this place.

"Come..." Lezard was taking her hand, ushering her forward, their feet leaving the ground to walk across the air. "There's more to see." The pair walked along the pathway, hovering just over the platforms, finding their way deeper and deeper into his world. As they traveled, signs of life began to show, twisted, horrid creatures that roamed their platforms, hungry for souls, wanting to feast on the flesh of mortals.

Lenneth couldn't help but let out a horrified gasp, turning Lezard around to face her. "What are such creatures doing in this world?!" She demanded, gesturing angrily towards an ice demon.

Cool eyes assessed the monster, before speaking. "You don't like my choice in guardians?"

"Guardians?" She held back a snort of laughter. "Such beasts are not fit for such an honored title." Lenneth shook her head. "They are monsters...soul eaters. Pure abominations in the eyes of the Divine."

"Really now?" Lezard sounded amused. "I find them to be quite effective at keeping out unwanted pests." He held out his hand, and a winged imp, about the size of a human's head, flew towards them. It circled the pair, eyes curious, before coming closer. Lenneth tensed up, but Lezard called out to the imp, soft tone reassuring the creature of it's safety. Letting out a chirp, it landed on Lezard's outstretched arm, clawed toenails digging into his jacket's sleeve.

"These little guys make excellent spies." Continued Lezard, reaching forward to pet the imp's head with his other hand. The tiny creature all but purred, luxuriating in the feel of it's master's touch. "And they're extremely loyal too. You'll have a friend for life if you can befriend one."

"I wouldn't want to be friends with a monster." Lenneth said stiffly, staring at the tiny creature.

Lezard gave a graceful shrug of his shoulders, still petting the imp. "You'd be surprised at who or what you take as a companion when you've little choice in the matter." But he offered no explanation towards the meaning of his cryptic words. "Back when I was a mortal, I often filled my home with monsters." He shook his arm, and the imp spread it's wings, lifting up into the air. It let out a questioning chirrup, before flying off, it's flight erractic with it's excitement.

"You did?" Lenneth was surprised. "Why would you do such a thing?"

"Let us just say...I valued my privacy." Once again they were moving, talking as they walked, the monstrous creatures of the crystal plains wisely keeping their distance from the divine pair.

"Sounds lonely to me..." murmured Lenneth, looking downwards at their feet. The crystal plain was beginning to change, the platforms stretching out into longer expanses of land, until at last, it became connected with no end in sight. Their feet touched down on the crystal, no longer needing to hover over the ice, for it was melting, washing away to reveal sand browned from the twin suns that hovered in the sky of this new section of Lezard's world. It's heat beat down on them mercilessly, and Lenneth began shrugging out of the cloak, no longer having need of it.

The monsters were different here with tanned skin like leather, and they moved slowly, laboring under the heavy heat of the suns. Withered trees, bereft of their leaves dotted the landscape, their oaken trunks split in half. It was a complete contrast to the cold crystal, far too harsh a climate for anything but specially engineered monsters to survive the heat for very long.

Lenneth let out a sigh, and Lezard looked at her. "Something the matter my dear?"

"Your world...is certainly different from what I expected a mortal to create." Lenneth said at last.

"Oh? And just what were you expecting" He asked, sounded intrigued.

"I suppose...a mortal's idea of paradise." She answered.

"And what would that entail?" Lezard wanted to know.

"It wouldn't be so cold...so impersonal..." She replied, waving her hands about. "There would be beauty all around us, the land lush with life, green as far as the eye could see." As she spoke Lezard was concentrating, power radiating off of him. It touched the land, and began spreading out from their feet, the sand disappearing, turning into bright green grass with a rainbow assortment of flowers sprouting up, forming colorful patterns in the ground. The grass surged ahead, touching the trees, making them come alive and healed, whole once more.

Leaves sprouted from their branches, and birds sang, their beautiful haunting melodies filling the sky. "Go on Lenneth..." urged Lezard, eyes closed. Sweat beaded down the side of his face, the only sign of exertion showing on the wizard.

Lenneth blinked, surprised at the changes he was making. "Er...there'd be no monsters...only the gentlest of animals...the sky a brilliant blue with nary a cloud in sight..." As she spoke Lezard made her description come to life, the suns changing, merging into one being, the heat lifting up considerably. "There would be streams...leading towards a cool lake, it's water clear and brimming with life..."

"Done..." Lezard whispered, the green spreading out into a large circle, which then filled itself in with water.

"Lezard...just what are you doing?" asked Lenneth, looking at him curiously.

Opening his eyes, Lezard looked at her, ignoring the changed landscape. "Making your vision come true."

"Yes but why...?"

"You needn't sound so suspicious." He smiled then. "It's just..."

"Just what?" She questioned.

"I've always wanted to create something with you." He answered, bending down to pluck a white flower from the ground. She was still staring at him, silent surprise in her eyes when he straightened, flower in his hand. He brought it before her face, allowing her to smell it's sweet scent, and then he was moving, placing it over her right ear.

Lenneth's hand came up, catching at his hand which still lingered in her hair. "Why do I get the feeling you've wanted to do that for a long time? Far longer than I have known you?" She stared searchingly into his eyes, trying not to frown at the evasion she saw in his amethyst orbs.

"You're imagining things." Lezard said, turning abruptly away. He started to walk on without her, his voice calling back to her. "Coming Lenneth?"

Her fingers touched the flower in her hair, stroking the soft petals as she stared after him. She gave a shake of her head, and then was on the move, hurrying after her groom.

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To Be Continued...eventually! ;-p

Hmm...I got a surprise today...I found that I had forgotten I started on chapter three a few months back. It was nice to discover I had the beginning already written out! ;-p Hmmm...as usual there are things I like and things I don't like about this chapter. But I'm rather eager to get this posted for the bits I do like. "sweatdrop." I think time away from a story sometimes help. Chapter two no longer seems as bad as I feared it to be.

---Michelle

Ze Strawberry Bunny, heh...I agree! However, I'm a realist. She just met him, no way is she that easy! He's got his work cut out for him if he wants to sleep with Lenneth!

Lizard Valis, I'm trying to keep this as a T rated fic...at least...for as long as I can maintain it.

Aura, ouch! Filler?! "falls down" "sheepish look" (This one probably seems even more filler like...eek!) I think I'm getting better at writing from Lezard's point of view, even if it's not shown in this chapter. Mainly I've had a lot of practice writing him in the stalkerverse (Which is not posted on fanfic net. It's exclusive to the L.J. community. Bunny! I'm plugging the community! Hee!) so hopefully future chapters from his perspective, I'll feel more confident in penning!

Kaelin! Hi there:D Oh ah...masterpieces?! "blush" You sure are flattering! "hugs ya" As for Silmeria, that would be telling. Though I do plan for him to free her eventually.