Title: Angel On My Shoulder
Published: May 22, 2008
Completed: April 6, 2008
Notes: This was my first EVER published Fanfiction story, so go easy on it.
Warnings: Spoilers (For those newly acquainted inheritance devotees) No Saphira (though she's not dead) AND Sexual Content.
Disclaimer: Characters, events, and places belong to author Christopher Paolini.

"A dream? No, this is real."

It had been an hour, a confounding hour, and it was destroying her. Her hands, they were still shaking, over and over again as if some unknowable force had sent an icy raft of crucifying flames throughout her cold and lissom fingers, and it was growing worse over the minute.

She had remained calm; calm as a lifeless corpse waiting to be buried and rotted underneath the ground for the rest of her dead and selfless course, she had to remain calm throughout the entire conversation between herself and Eragon. She had cautiously remained optimistic, had toremain optimistic. Even as she had mentally told herself over and over again to relax, relax, relax…she never did. She couldn't stay still for a single pathetic second.

She was sure Eragon had noticed it, the way he kept staring at her down at the courtyard. Did he not think she knew? That through every waking second they spent together, that she was causing him to mentally despise her for having such an excruciating effect on him, morally and physically? But whydid she have this affect on him? Whydid he have to love her;of all people. Was it only now she was realizing how much he loved her?

And why was thataffecting her so?

Even as she sank to the cold floor of her room, she only felt herself sink deeper. Things, as they were already, couldn't possibly get any more complicated between them, and even if they somehowformed a love beyond the bonds of friendship, it could never work. There was a war, and she didn't need him neglecting his studies. His sworn duties.

And she was way too old for him.

Excuses…the voiced chimed at the back of her head, her teasing thoughts returning to fiddle with her mind once more. She ignored them, gently keeping her optimistic level at ease, and avoiding any more unnecessary breakdowns that she didn't want; no longer needed, not at this hour; it was too late.

There was no denying it though, she realized this as she lifted her hands to gently soothe the ach in her temples. The voice, as much as she hated it, he guilty conscious was right.

They were only excuses, only ever excuses, but the facts still stood. He was too young, he had entire lifetime to look forward to, an immortal life. She was too broken for him, too detached from reality and sworn to a people negligent of human/elf relationships. What drew him to her? What thought permitted him to feel so affectionate? It confused her as much as it thrilled her.

Arya closed her eyes, feeling the coldness peck her body. It was raining, again. The pulsing sound of water merely rushing along the glass of her window echoed softly throughout her quarters. It was gentle, soothing, but it didn't stop Arya from pondering. Nothing could.

Of course, to say that she didn't hold feelings for Eragon wouldn't entirely be true. She admired him for his loyalty and will, his heart, his vitality and strength to invoke power within others. He idealized self preservation, befriended her when she allowed little to no contact from anyone since the death of her beloved companions, and she had allowed it.

But could thatpossibly lead to love? What was love anyway?

When her eyes opened, all she could see was darkness engulfing her like a thick woollen blanket coaxing her every breath of air. No sounds, nothing; nothing but the rain to accompany her in her wilful internal contemplations. Would the voices of her mind be the only ones to tell her the meaning of what her insanity decreed, what it was pointing to?

What she needed.

What she wanted, and...

Desired above all else?

In that moment, in that single moment she had been thinking of him, of Eragon, and her hands had stopped shaking. She knew then, absolutely and without doubt.

She stood suddenly, seemingly to repeat her previous actions before she had seen him in the courtyard. She needed to see him. She would see him, now, and this time explain everything to him.

No, there is a war; he would neglect everything you have worked so hard to build!It was another voice, stirring and sensible, different from the other one, more pulsing and demanding, emotionless and selfless. She wasn't listening; she was already heading for the door, removing her boots in the process and tossing them aside. Her decision was made and she would see it through.

Turn back…! This is ridiculous…As she walked on toward her destination, her aching voice continued its unsuccessful mission to sabotage her, but she took no notice of it, continuing her present course, but there was still and inkling inside her to succumb to its wishes, knowing they were half true…

What would she know? How was she to know if he would do something that foolish anyway? Skipping to conclusions she found pointless at this moment wasn't really helping her either…

A sudden hint of unease crossed her. Whatwas she doing? She shouldn't be doing this… It still didn't stop her from turning the corner that led to his room.

Stop, you will only make matters worse!The door lingered in front of her, somewhat toying with her like so many other things before it. The voice, it was still there, but it no longer bothered her, she wasn't listening to it, she wouldn't now; it wasn't going to stop her.

She paused outside his room, feeling her sensible side mulling over again to turn back, but the other side was telling her to press forward. She took a deep breath to steady her nerves. She needed to be surethat this was the right decision, but she neededto tell him, tell him that she wasn't the selfless young elf she made herself out to be, tell him that she was not, at all, heartless…

… and that she really wanted this…

She took another deep breath, closed her eyes, opened the door and closed it softly behind her.

There he was, lying on his bed, his stomach to the soft mattress beneath him, his sheets crumpled and fanned out in all directions and… they were wet.

Why were they wet? Was he in that much of a hurry to be away from her, forgetting to dry himself off as much as his clothes? His shirt was laying in a crippled heap in the corner as she searched the room for no apparent reason, merely interest, but was easily spotted by the lonely candle sitting on the floor at the foot of his bed, its flames still licking at the cool air as the rain continued to fall outside, visible droplets along Eragon's windowpane running down the colourless glass.

He hadn't moved, hadn't flinched nor jerked when Arya entered his darkened room. He should have. His newly found elvin sensors were akin to hers, perhaps not as attuned, but he still should have noticed her trembling steps outside his door, instead he just laid there, not moving, not bothering, soft intakes of fresh air forming in and out his nostrils. He looked…peacefully content,above their last encounter, of course.

Her heart was pounding, having not felt that for a fairly long time. Slowly, she walked quietly to the side of his bed. No sounds, nothing but the soft pelts of rain, nothing but the pale candlelight to give her light within the dark, even then she could still see.

She kneeled down beside his bed, her knees reaching the cool floor as she bent down and sat in the nook of her calves, resembling the position of Dwarven payer. There would be no prayers tonight, no wishes, only choice to decide her will, and she was hardlya dwarf.

He still didn't move, but Arya wasn't interested in his movements at the moment, merely concentrating on containing the simmering fire boiling within her abdomen.

She leaned down slightly, relaxing on her hand and leaning into it gently, now coming within height of Eragon's damp face. She was hardly relaxing at this stage, but still, she wouldn't be leaving now.

She only stared at him now, frozen and suddenly rooted to the position she had placed herself in; kneeling on the ground, leaning on her hand, her head barely inches from his, and her adorned emerald eyes unable to turn away from his damped, peaceful and sober face. No, she wouldn't be leaving… not now.

She tentatively raised her other hand slowly, leaning on the other gently to steady herself as much as the engulfing pounds inside her chest were heaving. No, No, No!Her sensible voice was screaming at her now, calling for her to turn back, to retreat and find another means of amendments. She sealed off the voice.

Her hand delicately brushed the side of his face, tracing over the dampened areas that coaxed his gently formed features. Her knuckles, sliding softly over his cheek bones like a melodic harp. Her wrist twisted slowly so that the back of her hand was tenderly brushing his jaw line with soft fingers.

She no longer felt the fidgeting overwhelm her. She no longer felt her sensible voice cascade her thoughts with pulsing decisions and confusions. She felt…relieved.But she hadn't spoken her deepest thoughts yet, the main reason why she was here in the first place.

"If only you knew…" she spoke softly, no longer caring for what it may cause, her deepest thoughts now projecting. There was a slight gleam in her emerald eyes. She knew she had to do this now, or lose her supreme opportunity. Her head was slowly inching closer to his, forgetting her sensible voice at the back of her mind, and following what her heart trulydesired. She could feel his enticing body heat upon her face…

Eragon's eyes opened, his sudden piercing gaze pricking her like tipped thorns. Arya paused, her hand somewhat attached to his sweaty cheek.

He didn't move. His deep brown eyes could be seen clearly through the soft wavers of the candle light. They were wide, cautious and stunned. He couldn't move. Arya could feel his quick pulses of air fathom against her palm. They were cold, hitting the same soft spot of her hand with each hard intake. Arya only returned the gaze, having nowhere else to portray her glittering eyes. Her sudden stiffness showed through her brick of emotions. She couldn't possibly imagine Eragon's.

"Arya?" his voice was slightly breathless, slight and wavering. There was no escaping now. Arya had pushed herself into a position where it bid impossible to do so.

"Yes." she whispered

"What…" his faded off, the question clearly written upon his face. Arya's hand, still upon his cheek, gently slid up and into his wet hair, feeling it moist and soak between her fingers. Eragon's eyes were like saucers, still wide and stunned beyond bewilderment. Her fingernails softly grazed his scalp, absently continuing to run her hand through his hair. She leaned in toward him slightly.

"As I said," she whispered softly, her breath catching her words, and leaning in closer until she could feel his quickened breaths upon her lips. "I'm sorry."

Her lips, so soft and sweet, caught his in a suave movement of passion that stunned him to cold ice, and his eye lids slipped closed. Her hand embedded in his hair, pulled him closer until their foreheads were together, meeting his damp brow against her cool skin. Eragon, frozen beyond ice, melted into her fiery passion, lips moving against hers with soft ease. Arya's tongue, a brief surprise to Eragon, penetrated past his lips and slipped into his mouth, savouring him as if it were their last moment. Eragon compelled himself forward, feeling Arya's tongue rub and nib against his, returning the ecstatic movement against her own.

Breathless, Arya pulled back slowly, her forehead never motioning away from his, her eyes ablaze with something akin to amazement of her own actions. She looked at Eragon. His breathing had eased, soft and slow, but his eyes were closed. Her hand slipped out of his tangled hair and down to the nook of his neck, where most of the water squeezed from his hair by Arya, ran down like tangled veins. She gently massaged his neck with little round circles.

She could feel his muscles tighten and loosen within the comfort her hand was giving him. She softly mingled her fingers through his hair at the back of his head, gently pulling at it and rubbing under the strands. He sighed longingly, and his eyes finally slipped open, his brown eyes gazing into her hypnotic emeralds.

And then he smiled.

It seemed as if he had never smiled. It had been so long since she had seen a spark of happiness within the young Rider's eyes, but for it to arouse in the affections of an adorned smile, made her stomach flutter to the mercy of his cunning smile. She smiled, twisting up at the sides of her cheeks, it was gorgeous and Eragon couldn't seem take his hypnotized eyes away from it.

He moved forward again, lips brushing his with a devotion Eragon couldn't seem to mimic, her hand at the back of his neck fidgeting with his wet curls of hair, her tongue pressing forward again. With assurance in his eyes as he closed them for a second time, he leaned up slightly into the kiss, stood slowly on his elbows and applied more pressure to the heated passion, sighing softly against her lips.

Eragon lifted his hand, leaning slightly on his elbow, and slipped it to rest at the nook between her shoulder and neck, rubbing his palm slightly against her soft skin. Their lips still locked, Arya stood up on her knees, her other hand now running through his hair with swift fingers curling with his thin strands.

Eragon's hand slipped to her arm, pulling at it gently, gesturing for her to come closer, as if he were desperate to keep what moments they had left. Arya hesitated slightly. She had come here to explain,reason with him, and tell what truths she held against him. It wasn't supposed to go this far. Whatwas she doing?

You're doing what your heart has ever so long desired, dear Arya.The voice at the back of her head was assuring, soft and gentle, nothing like her sensible. She should have just told him and then left. She should have… but she knew better. She knew she was too lost, too flushed to even bring up her reasons. She had already explained everything to him by what she was doing now. And she didn't want to leave him.

She leaned into him, his hand still softly gripping her arm with gentle hands. No more hesitations, not now.

She allowed him to pull her towards him, his hand sliding up and down her arms. He leaned back, backing up slowly, sheets ruffling under him. Arya took her hand away from his head, and placed it on the bed and hauled herself up onto the soft mattress, easing herself slowly but unsurely.

Eragon laid back, his hand reaching for Arya. He looked up at her; she was on her hands and knees, starring down at him with adoring eyes looming deep into his. When no words could be passed between them, Arya took the risk by easing closer toward him, the sheets shifting under her knees as she lowered herself beside him. Eragon turned his head, his eyes apparent within the candle light, seemingly glowing like the pale moonlight, staring onlyat her. She only returned the gaze.

Her hand, gliding through thin air, came to rest upon his abdomen. Eragon shuddered stiffly, closing his eyes suddenly, and feeling her cold hand on his damp skin. She snaked her hand up, tracing the curve points of his muscles, the heat of his soft skin under her cold hand. Hiseyes were closed, and he was taking sharp intakes of breath from a few mere touches she had on him. Her eyes never stowed away from him. She couldn't.

Leaving off the teasing caress, Arya slid her hand up to his bare shoulder, holding in her breath for what she was about to do next. She balanced herself as she sat up and propped her leg over his waist and slipped into his lap. Eragon's eyes shot open, staring up at Arya sitting upon his lap. His mind, still splitting in different directions, hammered at him to remain calm..

He reached up, stretching his arm enough to reach her, and touched her cheek delicately with three fingers. They stayed like that for several minutes, staring deeply at each other with nothing but pure passion lingering within their eyes. Within those long, pulsing minutes he thought lasted for hours, Eragon gathered his courage and moved his hand down lower, tracing down, his hand moving down through the valley of her breasts, over her stomach, until finally he left it to rest at her hip, where he paused slightly, hesitating with the briefest second until he saw the twinkling hint within Arya's green eyes as he looked up again. It was a sign; Eragon knew that. It was an urge, permission, and Eragon felt his courage discarded, because now, he felt he didn't need it to get through what could possibly happen…

His hand, soft and gentle, slipped under her linen tunic.

Arya sighed, closing her eyes. She knew it would come to this, when all she had to do was explain to him, and perhaps keep him away until the war was over. But right now, as he massaged gently under her shirt, it was enticing, his touch made her shudder, made her gasp…

He twisted his hand around, knuckles softly scraping her skin as he gripped the ends of her tunic, his other hand running up her leg, taunting her, over her thigh and finally under her tunic, meeting with his other hand, and together they slowly lifted up the fabric. Arya leaned down brushing her lips against his for the briefest moment, before raising her arms and allowing Eragon to lift the tunic up and over her head, revealing the perfect swell of her breasts before his bewildered eyes. He dropped the discarded fabric to the ground.

Arya didn't want to open her eyes; her shuddering will compelled her to do so. She could feel Eragon's gaze upon her and even with her eyes closed she felt the warm sense of possession that his eyes raked her with, and now, there was no going back.

She slowly opened her eyes, only to see his own already longingly infiltrating hers. She was leaning down, her body pressed against his as their lips met again, full of exploring tongues and feathering hands. Eragon stroked her side lightly, fingertips running from her hip to her shoulder as if he couldn't bear to stop touching her, every nerve singing with wanton lust.

And then he slipped his thumbs under the waistband of her black leggings. Arya paused in her kisses, catching her breath, her lips still lingering on his for a moment, before she left her head to rest in the nook of his shoulder. Eragon soon stoped, thoughts of her objecting reaching into his mind. He pulled back his hands.

"No," Arya whispered into his neck, her sweet breath washing against his skin. "Don't stop."

He turned his head, leaning against hers resting in his shoulder, her exquisite aroma filling his nose. "I... I'm not so sure... Are you sure?" he spoke softly into her ear, rubbing his head against her own.

She smiled softly, lifting her head from his shoulder and kissing him again. Eragon could feel her smile against his lips, and with assurance, he moved his hands back to her waistband. His hands slipped under the leather, rubbing his palms against her buttocks and squeezing softly in massaging circles. Her moan against his lips was beautiful, only imploring him to rub harder. Her leggings loosened and Eragon gripped the hems with his thumbs and slowly pulled down her leggings.

Arya sat up, her hips rubbing against his groin. He gasped, his grip on her leggings tightening. Things had suddenly taken a turn, the heat around them suddenly growing intense. Arya saw his reaction, and couldn't help but fathom a small smile. She paused slightly, and then tentatively moved her hips again, her hands gripping his shoulders, rubbing against his groin harder. Eragon closed his eyes, bitting back the urge to groan when she moved her hips again.

"Arya…" There was a slight tremor in his voice, a desperate, pleading tone. He made a sound, something between a gasp and a scoff, sharp intakes of breath within each inhale. "… Arya, stop…"

She paused again, hearing the pleading tone in his voice. She held back her own urge to tell him that she enjoyed his helplessness. Eragon opened his eyes, staring up at her. His hands hadn't moved from her waistband, they were still planted underneath the leather. Eragon's breath escaped his mouth, his hands slipped up her back, the palms unbelievably warm against her bare skin, and before Arya had a chance to wonder what he was doing, Eragon had rolled her under him. Palms stroking her upper body as they went down again, with no hesitations, he eased her leggings down. Arya arched her back up slightly, hips raising to make it easier for him.

Eragon leaned down, lips brushing her smooth chest, chastely kissing her skin as he pulled down her leggings, hands sliding down her perfect legs where the leather had been previously. He went down, sucking her skin with each tender kiss as he moved, and savouring every inch of her stomach with his kisses. Arya was at the mercy of his lips, hand engulfed into his wet hair, pulling at the strands softly until she felt her entire body bare. Her leggings removed, Eragon dropped them with her tunic, the puddle of cloths growing. Arya pulled him up, her grip tightening on his hair as their lips melted to each other again.

Arya had hooked her thumbs under his own waistband just as he had hers a moment ago. She eased them down off his hips, seeing the muscles of his stomach tense. When she could pull them down no further, Eragon took charge and kicked them off with his feet, along with his wretched boots.

Eragon was staring, his eyes greedy on her bare skin. His gaze was almost as intense as his touch, and Arya felt his eyes run over every inch of her. No slackening of desire there; his delicate little murmur of need told her more than a thousand sonnets praising her beauty. Beauty he saw, and made her feel.

He opened his mouth, but no words were said. He braced his arms on either side of her to keep most of his weight off her seemingly delicate frame, and using his knees to slowly spread her legs apart and position himself above her, his eyes never leaving hers.

He loves me. She whispered internally to herself.

Forehead leaning down and touching hers, wet hair brushing against her head, he asked suddenly, "Is this a dream?"

Arya's scorching emerald eyes bore into his. Unable able to help the form of affection, she gently nudged her nose against his cheek and pressed herself against him. "A dream?" she whispered, grinding against him dangerously, and watching as his mouth parted weakly in response. "No, this is real."

Enough waiting, enough taunting. The last trace of nervousness vanished from Eragon's expression. Arya drew in a gasping breath, hands slipping down to the sheets beneath her. Eragon braced himself over Arya, their foreheads still locked. Steadily, as gently as he could, and with both their hearts racing, he eased into her and groaned softly as he entered her.

For several heartbeats, they remained perfectly still, Arya's hands clenched to the sheets while Eragon fought to control his sudden shivering. He had waited… he had waited so long for her, ever since his confused emotions on the glades of Tronjheim, from the walk to the Menoa Tree, to the heart wrenching night of the Agaetí Blödhren, the battle of the Burning Plains, to this moment. After all his recklessness, after all his efforts to win her heart, he could finally have her, and take her for himself.

And she him.

Eragon began to move, hips rubbing against hers with gentle ease. Arya's grip on the sheets tightened as she gasped into his shoulder. His lips found hers again, and Arya's response to them was immediate, leaning her head up to deepen the kiss, brutally scourging every inch of his mouth, gritting her teeth when Eragon moved again, and causing her to moan against his mouth. She lost her grip in the sheets, bringing her hands to his neck as she started nibbling on Eragon's ear lobe, setting her mouth on a different task to stop herself from moaning. Even now she worked to restrain herself.

Eragon's breathing had grown rough, and Arya had to force herself to slow her own. This was a moment to savour, and Arya kept the pace leisurely as she began to move with him, vaguely trying to ease her quickening breaths. Eragon subsided down, pressing their nude bodies together in a heated moment as he chastely sucked her neck, moving his lips within the hollow area, and kissing her skin with light, wet pecks. Arya closed her eyes, the feeling of his lips against her skin sent her begging for more until he compelled to her will, pressing against her harder and thrusting, hard.

After the first shock of pleasure, sensation so intense it blotted out all thought, Eragon managed to win back some control of his breathing and his mind. He slid his hands up Arya's hips, thrusting into her with a rough groan escaping his mouth. Arya whimpered, her nails catching his shoulders, her eyes pleading. Arms wrapping tightly around his neck, she arched her back up, hips rising to meet his thrusts and rolling seductively. Their bodies moved after each wave of pleasure was brought upon them. Eragon's vision went red and white, blurring him each time he plunged himself into her, hips grinding against her own, the heat growing, and becoming a smouldering fire in the pit of his stomach.

Arya found herself moaning louder, helplessly in need, writhing under him as he kissed her neck, her shoulder, lips seemingly catching every soft spot on her body and thrusting into her again. Her nails dug into his shoulders as he continued his pace, hearing her own gasps and whimpers resound throughout the room, seeping over through the brink of pleasure. She was unable to stop the sounds escaping her mouth, for what was happening to her… what he was doing to her, it was something she could have never possibly fathomed until now. Bucking helplessly into his thrusts uncontrollably, Arya cried out, voice staggering throughout the room. She gritted her teeth when he only did it again, sheathing into her harder, deeper, and faster. He grunted every time, and it enticed her to roll against him harder. Arya didn't want it to end. She had wanted it so much, only, she hadn't known until barely a few moments ago. She didn't care if it had been too quick, didn't care what it could possibly lead to in the future. There was a war, yes, but any moment could be their last, and she wouldn't take that chance. It was happening now, and she didn't want to let it go.

She released his shoulders, hands trembling as she raked them through his hair. Eragon pressed his lips against her throat, applying pressure when he moved again, rubbing his hips harder against hers. Flesh smacked together desperately. He bit her neck softly, sucking the same spot to ease what pain it may have caused, a brief surprise to Arya. His suave kisses increased, groaning against her neck when she dug her nails into his scalp, thrusting into her again, she only dug deeper as she yelped, bitting down on her bottom lip when she felt him go deeper, and tightening around him when he only didn't it again.

And she couldn't help it. "Eragon…" she found her voice without losing it, breathing heavily when his forehead came to rest on hers again, his brown eyes half closed through waves of pleasure coaxing throughout their bodies. "Ah!" She was begging him, her voice staggering when he didn't stop, thrusting into her again, lips pressing down on hers. She moaned against his lips, voice filtering through the air, with hands embedded into his hair. "Eragon… harder… please… go faster…" she bit his lip impulsively and Eragon cried out.

Sweat trickled from Eragon's forehead, the tickling feeling running through his hair as it ran down his face, his body, everywhere. Arya could feel it on her skin, her hair sticking to her face as it dabbed out, slickening over them as their bodies moved together, the flushing heat between them never growing cold. A burning flame as their erotic cradle grew furthermore incited by their lust.

Again, he thrusted into her, their wet bodies moving together at an overwhelming pace. Slowly, he brought his hands up to hers, pulling at them, forcing them out of his hair, she cried in protest but she complied regardless as she moaned loudly. His weight fell upon her, she gasped, breathing deeply when it caused his hips to fall against hers and driving him deeper. When her hands were free from his hair, Eragon gripped them tightly and pulled them over her head. Holding them tightly at the head of the bed, he securing them from snaking anywhere else. She struggled against his grip, having no distinct clue to what he was doing as he held her hands in place. She fell to his will, giving him what he obviously wanted and laid there, panting heavily as she starred at him, and he her.

Eragon subsided his breathing, and gently, he eased almost all the way out. Arya whimpered, her hands trying to escape his grip, writhing underneath his body helplessly with no successes. As she had noticed throughout the night, he wasn't one to give in easily, he would not let her go, and her eyes were just as pleading as her voice had been…

And then he thrusted all the way in with an answer to her plea, hips cramming against hers, eyes filling with water as he whispered huskily into her ear, "Arya…" His own voice spoken with such need and passion, longing and lust, all for her, accompanied by such a deeply satisfying sensation mellowed in an overwhelming groan. His voice caught at the back of his throat. Arya's teeth clenched on a scream of pleasure, arms straining as Eragon kept them in place. Her world went spiralling, her back arched completely off the bed as she flung her head back, her legs locking around his waist.

It seemed only the beginning. No words existed for this, whether they were pure emotion or poetically coherent, no words existed. How it felt to be within her, to hear her moan loudly with each hard thrust he possessed, to know that she actually wanted him, after all that had transpired between them in the past… she had really wanted him.

So close now; after withstanding the heart aches, the denials, the rejections, the pleasure of having her now was almost unbearable. Eragon hadn't stopped, his sudden drive of lust after her pleading kept him at his overwhelming pace. He found her lips again, engaging them with his own, passion leaping into his head, hands gripping tighter on Arya's wrists. Arya leaned up into the kiss, fingernails severally digging into her palms as she moaned against his lips uncontrollably, almost loosing herself completely through the erotic pleasure he continued to give her, even when she felt herself on the brick of tears, tears of joy, happiness, relief even… but still he drove deep and fast.

Electric sensations seemed to leap through his veins, every muscle tensing. He could hear her heart beating in time with his own as he pressed against her, hearing her yelping cries against his lips. Her eyes were closed, painfully shut when he saw the single tear seep from her closed lids. She looked like she was in pain, lips grinding against his with every soft whimper, but she drove him deeper when she bucked her hips harder into his thrust, only tempting for more by her movements.

His fingers suddenly numb, he released Arya's wrists, feeling them fling straight away from his grasp. He was close, he could feel it coming. Eragon kept his lips to hers, soothing his breaths for only brief moments before returning to her. Arya's hands clawed down his back, gripping at the skin. Her legs tightened aground his waste, and by the pleading note in her voice, Eragon could tell she was close, too. Any moment, one more moment, everything was becoming a blur, the room echoing with sounds of pure desire and pleasure. Both of them would reach the apex together…

Eragon's hands gripped the crumpled sheets ruffling under their movements, bracing himself on both her sides. He rose slightly, Arya's legs slipping from her waist. He kneeled above her, spreading her legs further as he settled hotly between. He looked down at her once, admiring what was finally his, before he plunged int her deeply again with his final thrust, head arching back, his life spilling into her after so long awaited. Emerald eyes shot open, the world around her suddenly becoming white-hot as she arched back. Arya's nails, once more, raked his shoulders as pleasure stormed through her fast. She cried out almost as if in pain, and near screaming.

His hands lost their grip, sweaty palms releasing the sheets, his support lost. Eragon fell against Arya, both falling hard against the bed, and crying out as their bodies tumbled against each other, weakness engulfing them as they panted heavily. With the remaining strength he had left, he eased out of her, her soft little whimper following as he fell to the bed again. For a very long time they simply lay like that, both of them still shaking in the aftermath of such intense moment. Eragon had collapsed on top of her, his head resting on her shoulder, catching his breath, and eyes closed. Arya was stiff, her eyes wide open as her body hummed with the burning of her ecstasy. And when at last she suddenly tilted her head to the side and met with a bundle of brown hair, she smiled softly. She brought her arms up, shaking slightly, and held one around his neck and the other on his back, sighing deeply when she nestled closer against him, their flushed and heated bodies pressing together in sweet content.

At last, when Arya caught her breath, she spoke the words that she had been meaning to express when she first arrived, the reason why she had come to see him in the first place, something she should have done before the exception of being a stubborn elf. The truth.

"I think," she said, "That I love you." Soft and mellowed in the ancient language, and her words could be no more truthful. "Yes. I do." She felt him smile against her shoulder, his arm slipping up to her other shoulder and moving his head so it rested under her chin, his skin soft against hers and damp. They were savouring the feeling of being surrounded by one another in such an unkemptly fashion.

"You know I love you too, then?"

Her smile only deepened, nothing but the rain to accompany them as they fell into their trance, and for the first time in a long time, they felt relaxed and peaceful, nestled together safely…

And the lone candle finally burnt out, and darkness shimmered within the rain.

I've always believed in the angel on my shoulder,
And the sweetness that comes with changes in weather,
So let's close the drapes,
And dance like we're strangers to time,
Until our fountain runs dry.

Gretchen Lieberum: Angel on my Shoulder