Just a one-shot I had running through my mind for a bit. Rated just to be safe, thought it's still high. Anyway, hope you like it. Also, in this scenario they never got together in ROTG.


Perfection, bliss, belonging, ecstasy, paradise, everything that exists in only this moment. Lies, sin, corruption, betrayal, deep breaths wash it all away; at least for now. As she lay next to Numair, head on his bare chest, Daine closed her eyes, breathing in his scent. The smell of sex lingered still and he had yet to catch his breath. They lay across his robe, a single flickering candle casting shadows across them as they lay on his study floor. She feels his hand travel slowly down her neck, her chest, her stomach; making her heart quicken and her breathing become ragged once more. He travelled lower still, caressing her inner thigh as he parted her legs and she gasped.

"He's waiting" She strangled out, eyes closing in pleasure.

"Let him wait" Numair whispered as he threaded his hand through her hair "I'm not near done yet" He kissed her slowly, passionately and she gave up pretences, hand sliding down his chest.

How long ago had this started? How long ago had they made deceivers of one another? Was Rosalie sitting back at his tower, dreaming of her husbands return? Had Camus realized she was missing? Did they care? Would it matter? They had given their lives for their country, their loyalty, and their bodies. This, this they kept for themselves. Could they be blamed? Numair kissed her neck, moving downwards slowly, careful not to leave marks and she clutched her hands in his hair, gasping as he reached her breasts. She remembered the day. The day that Numair's engagement had been announced; a marriage of political necessity, her stomach still rolled at the phrase. Jon had asked him of course, but what could Numair say? She was a very high ranking noble from a country whom they were in peace talks with, how could he refuse and risk war for the country he had given so much for? She remembered the feeling of cold that had descended on her, numbing her until she wasn't aware of anything but him as he held the woman's hand, the smile on his face so forced that it made her clench her fists. She had confronted him, asked him why, why would he throw his life away like that? He had told her, the tone in his voice bringing tears to her eyes, that there was no choice. She had not known then, she thought she hated it so because simply because they were friends, if only she had known.

Daine arched her back as Numair bit down on the delicate skin of her hip gently, hands gliding down to spread her legs wider and she moaned loudly as he placed his lips between them. His marriage, she barely remembered. It felt like she had been walking to a hanging. They way he had locked eyes with her throughout the vows, at the time it had confused her, now she knew why. Even then, in her ignorance, she had found tears streaming down her face as she watched them. The rest of the night, she had gotten too drunk to remember. Thank all the gods in existence, oblivion had been her sanctuary that night, like so many after, just another kind. Her gasps became louder as she arched her body up more, hands over her head and clutching at the cloak beneath them, and she threw her head back, eyes closed as she felt the pressure rise. A few more moments and she tensed, letting out a shuddered gasp, before slowly relaxing, her eyes glazed. Numair slid up her body slowly, planting tantalizing kisses as he went.

She had thought that that would be the worst of it, how wrong she had been. Four months later the same had been asked of her. Jon's eyes had held shame, actual shame, when he asked her. Of course she said yes, Tortall had given her everything, it had given her a home, what price was too great to pay for that? After the announcement she had excused herself from the false congratulations and the knowing glances and fled to the clearing where Numair had first shown her magic. He had found her there, yelling and pleading, the devastation so clear in his voice it broke her heart, why? He had asked, over and over, why? Why not? What was she to do? Why did it matter so to him, had he not done the same? He had walked towards her then, his face dark, and for a brief second she really thought he had been about to hit her. Instead he kissed her, and she knew. She knew why all of it was so hard, why it was so wrong. She knew why he had looked at her as he gave himself to another woman. They had lain together then, on the damp grass beneath a darkening sky. Desire, longing, sorrow, pain, need; all laid bare in front of one another. Only they existed, this short time was theirs and theirs alone.

Numair held her tightly to him as he sank into her with a shuddered gasp. His movements were slow as she matched his rhythm and their synchronized sighs filled the room. It had always been like this, even in the desperation of those first times. They always dragged it out, holding on as long as possible before they had to return to their lies. After that time in the clearing they had said never again, we won't be those people. They were so wrong, eight months later, her wedding day. His eyes had seared through her the entire ceremony and afterwards, as they received congratulations and mingled with the many dignitaries and nobles who couldn't care less and their friends who looked as if they had just been at a funeral, he had pulled her away. She had still been in her wedding dress. It was brief, so she would not be missed; he had pushed her behind a tapestry and against the wall, lifting her skirts as he whispered into her ear. Need, now, mine, forever, love; everything was lost in the whisper of fabric and voices as they came together. That had been five years ago.

Daine tensed once more and felt Numair do the same as he let out a shuddering moan into the hollow of her throat before everything was still. They lay there, wrapped up in one another, more at home than at any other time. Camus, if he knew he did not care and truly was he any better? He barely acknowledged her existence past that of a political asset and a bed warmer, and he had his own fair share of indiscretions. What she didn't know about was Rosalie, and she would never ask. Was she like Camus? In it for power, living her life with no regard to Numair? Or did she love him? Did she await his return? Did she want a family? She would never ask Numair, their time together was theirs and theirs alone, nothing else mattered at these times. Any sins committed were outside this room, outside this shadow of a life they created together.

People knew, they must, but each knew well enough to keep their opinions to themselves. Even Camus, if he had any. He must have noticed that she still wore her charm when he bedded her. Numair surely enough knew that she didn't when she was with him, he had been the one to help her take it off. She placed a hand on her stomach as Numair buried his head deeper into the crook of her neck. Camus would certainly know that the child was not his. Not after a few years at least, but she doubted he cared as long as he could name an heir. As for the child, it would know who its real father was. Of that she would make certain. They would be a family of sorts, if only in stolen moments. A pang went through her when she imagined the possibility of Numair having children by Rosalie. She loathed the prospect and yet couldn't feel wrong about it even if it meant denying another woman of motherhood. That woman had stolen Numair, it was only fair. Except for I truly have him, she thought to herself.

She rolled over slightly, putting her arms around Numair. In the light of day it was sometimes too much to handle. All her sins, all her indiscretions closed in on her until she couldn't breathe and she felt her humanity falling away. She had been stolen from in this life, she was sure, but she had taken just as much. If all those people she's helped could see her now what would they think? What would she be able to say? That in his arms it all fell away, it was all worth it for these few moments. Stolen moments, not for her, never for her. What would she say to those children that saw them as nothing more than the hypocrisy of the crown as they looked for heroes to lead them into the future? What would she say? We were heroes once too.


Sorry if it was too clumped together to read...it looked really silly when I split it up more. Review please!

A/N This takes place when Daine is 25 meaning that Numair married when she was 19, and that she married Camus when she was about 20.

Seriously though any kind of review really helps the author! Even if it's nothing contructive to say it's still great to get ANY kind of feedback! So please join the review revolution (see my profile for what that is) and support the fanfic authors !