Some words are better left unspoken

The celebrations for the coronation went on for an entire month, during which people from all over Ferelden came to Denerim to see the King and, of course, the Hero who saved them all from the Blight.

Apart from the public audiences, Elissa spent most of her days in wearisome meetings with King Alistair's advisers or with Grey Wardens' emissaries from all over Thedas. She had to help solve food supplying problems as well as to explain tothe Wardens just why both she and Alistair were still alive after the Archdemon's defeat. It was a very hard month, much harder then she'd thought it would be, being the acclaimed Hero of Ferelden and all. She had hoped she could be free to reach Amaranthine sooner than that, but her new duties as royal counsellor and Grey Wardens Commander required otherwise. Somehow she felt she was honouring her parents' memory by fulfilling her duties. Her education as an heir of the Cousland family helped her out with the decisions she was called to make and in dealing with the nobles on behalf of Alistair.

Poor Alistair. If this month had been hard for her, it had been almost unbearable for him. Unaccustomed as he was to royal politics, he needed her advice, and allowed only Elissa, Eamon and Teagan to support him in making his own decisions. Within a couple of weeks since the coronation, all of their companions had gone their separate ways. All but Zevran. Elissa found herself smiling when thinking of him. He had fought alongside her until the very end, always watching her back, and after the coronation he had agreed to go with her to Amaranthine and help rebuild the Grey Wardens.

After the last tedious meeting of the day she finally allowed herself to go back to her room. It was very late, she thought, and probably Zevran was in his room, sulking over the fact that she had preferred work over him. That wasn't the case, of course. She spent the days looking forward to the nights, because days were for Ferelden and the Grey Wardens, but nights were intended to be for her and Zevran. She was so tired on most nights that she just couldn't keep her eyes open, much less pay romantic attention to her lover. She usually fell asleep in his embrace, but lately Zevran had started feeling neglected, and had showed his obvious disappointment by deserting her room.

She had tried to convince him that the current situation was temporary and that soon they'd be able to travel to Amaranthine, but she was starting to have a hard time believing that herself. Things were settling down very slowly in Denerim, and Alistair was no less dependent on her guidance now than before. She sighed, walking along the castle corridors, wondering if she would find Zevran at all that night.

She went through the door of her apartments, entering the small sitting room, and then proceeded to her study. Both rooms showed no sign of Zevran's presence. With another sigh she entered her bedroom, only to find that the fire was merrily crackling and that the elf was apparently sound asleep in her bed. Her mood definitely improved at the sight of her lover, and Elissa shucked off her clothes and slid under the sheets as silently as she could.

"You could as well wear a full plate armor for all the noise you make, you know?" Zevran murmured.

"You're not asleep, I see" said Elissa with a smile, sliding further on, towards his form.

"I was asleep, until you decided to march in like a raging bronto. Luckily I never wasted my time trying to teach you to be stealthy."

Grumpy, are we? Elissa thought.

"You are stealthy enough for both of us" Elissa conceded, all the while aligning her body to his and draping her left arm across his chest. "By the way, I didn't know you were in here."

When he didn't comment, she continued, pushing her face in the crook of his neck, smelling his scent. "I'm happy I found you in my room." I need you, she thought, but she restrained herself from saying it out loud. For all his flirtatious comments, he was quite shy about his own true feelings towards her. She, on the contrary, felt like she had overexposed hers.

Once again she remembered her confession to him during the siege of Denerim. "I love you Zevran. I hope you know that."

He had cast down his eyes with a shy smile that was so unlike him. "Yes. Yes, I… I know that".

So much for professing one's love.

His answer had hurt her slightly. In the face of death she would have expected to hear something different from him. She knew that he cared about her, that he would have gladly given his life to save hers, but still… She was a woman after all, and she grew up as a teyrn's daughter, thinking that love meant romance and sweet nonsense, not sex and dirty talking.

Well, not only that.

Yet here she was, hopelessly in love with a man who had tried to kill her once, who had never told her what he felt about her, and whose life was in constant danger of being cut short by one of his former fellow assassins. Not exactly what her parents would have expected of her.

She was pulled off her thoughts by his voice, but she didn't catch the words, so she asked him to repeat.

"I asked how your day was", Zevran said. He opened his eyes just a fraction and looked at the fireplace, not at her. "I guess you are very tired, hm?"

"I'm tired, yes, but not that tired. I'm really happy that you're here with me." With that Elissa lifted her head above his, smiling and watching him intently, searching his eyes for a reaction.

"Really? And exactly how happy are you, my dear?" he asked with his trademark smirk, crossing his arms under his head.

"Oh, very much." Elissa smiled broadly, all the while peeling back the sheets from his chest and slowly caressing his smooth skin with her left hand.

"Perhaps you are willing to demonstrate, yes?"

"Of course, lover."

They were resorting to their usual flirting, mutually pretending that nothing had happened. At least he was looking at her now, though with a lecherous look. Elissa felt that in that month she had done too little for their relationship, and she feared that Zevran could have lost some of his interest in her. She planned to regain whatever was lost between them, though. Zevran was in for some surprises.

Elissa's hand wandered on his chest, then on his abdomen. Zevran relaxed under her touch, smiling smugly as he enjoyed her attention. She kissed him slowly, savouring his full lips for a while, and when he started to respond, opening his mouth, she slid her lips on his cheek, then on his neck.

He chuckled softly at her actions. "You are in a mood for games, I see. Very well."

With that Zevran made a show of settling more comfortably against his pillow.

Elissa smiled against his skin, continuing her descent down his torso, stopping occasionally to lick and bite his flesh in the most delicious ways. When Zevran's hands reached down to touch her hair, which for once was not held back in her trademark ponytail, she caught his wrists, lifting herself up and pushing back his hands under his head. "No," she simply added with a tiny smile, giving no further explanation before descending again on his abdomen.

He watched her curiously now, intrigued by her newfound assertiveness. He was usually the one initiating their lovemaking, and she was more than glad to sit back and receive his attentions. After all, she had been a virgin when she first accepted his invitation for a massage, and she was still bashful when it came to sex and his expertise in the field.

Not that he minded at all. He himself liked being the teacher, and simply loved to spoil her.

In their time together she had learnt a lot from him, though, and was now very good at the particular act he guessed she was going to perform, so he sat back and kept his hands where she had put them.

Her mouth trailed slowly downwards, carefully avoiding the part of him that was now standing to attention, circling his most sensitive areas but never touching them directly. After a minute of this he hissed his disapproval, bucking instinctively towards her mouth. Elissa giggled softly and retreated a bit from him, watching his slightly flustered expression. Zevran groaned then relaxed on the bed, allowing her to continue her game.

Elissa was pleased with the reaction she elicited from the usually collected elf, it was a rare thing for him to show any slips in his control. She decided to reward him by giving him exactly what he wanted. She regarded him with a sly grin, so unusual of her, and he responded with a knowing smile. If that was a game, she really couldn't tell who was winning.

She started by licking the tip of his erection, sliding down the underside of him towards the base, and the Antivan let out a soft groan of approval. After a moment Elissa moved her hand to replace her mouth there and then squeezed just a little, feeling the hardness under the velvety skin. Retracing the path upwards with her tongue, Elissa reached the tip of his erection and circled it a couple of times before suddenly sinking all the way down.

Zevran managed to remain still this time, letting out just the smallest sigh. Her red hair, free of any restraints, came down in front of her and prevented him from seeing her face.

"Elissa," he called, his voice a restrained whisper. She raised her eyes and looked at him from under the curtain of hair. "If you mean this to be for my enjoyment, I should be free at least to watch the show, yes?" he asked with a grin.

She smiled and nodded, her mouth never leaving him, and he gathered her hair in his hand to move it to the back of her head, while she resumed her actions. She started sucking in earnest, knowing very well that this particular action, together with the display she was currently offering, would bring him to the brink of orgasm in no time. After a moment of this, he tightened his grasp in her hair and she moaned on him as a result, speeding up her movements just a little.

"You little minx," he breathed, suppressing a gasp, "what is your devious mind up to, tonight?"

Elissa laughed briefly at that, still engulfing him, and the reverberation on his erection made him shudder. He was quickly nearing his peak, and his hand grasped her hair, pulling a little. With that she started to move her tongue on the underside of him, licking the bulging vein there, still sliding up and down on him with her mouth and sucking with gusto.

Another groan from him, this time a loud one, warned her of his upcoming release. She pushed on his hips to keep him in place, and he came undone with a long, throaty moan. She swallowed everything he spilled, then licked him clean before sliding back up his body and laying down next to him.

She sprinkled light kisses on his chest and shoulder before laying her head in the crook of his neck, smelling his scent once again. Spices, leather… and something so uniquely Zevran. He was still panting heavily, his eyes closed, when his left arm came up to her shoulder and pulled her more firmly against his side.

"You know, you didn't answer my question", Zevran said, his voice once again calm and collected.

"Which question?"

"What are you up to, tonight? Not that I mind a little treat, of course. But… I am curious." Zevran opened his eyes and watched her, an unreadable expression on his face.

"Must it be a carefully devised plan for me to do something nice for you?" Elissa answered, immediately regretting her choice of words. "I mean, I just wanted to do it, is all."

He looked at her as if he didn't believe a single word, but he shrugged and turned partially to lie on his side, facing her. "And glad I am that you did. Now, if you do not mind, I would like to reciprocate." He started to caress her breast with his right hand, when she flicked it away.

"Hm, no… I do mind, actually" she said with a sly smile. "I'd rather you lie back and enjoy another kind of treat. Better still, come with me."