Gwen knew it wouldn't take much now to tip her over the edge.
She had reached that stage in intercourse when the heat radiating between her legs was delightfully scorching and she blissfully moaned every time Arthur pushed inside her. "Oh God..." she breathed heavily, "Arthur, I..." She tilted her head back, burying it into the pillows and closed her eyes in delirium. God, she was so close, so close...
The waves of pleasure hit her and she ebbed her way through quick orgasms. She opened her eyes again and tried to read his expression. She watched him moving above her. A smile spread across her lips, his pinch-closed eyes and strangled hoarse groans showed he was trying to hold back until she came.
Gwen decided to take control.
Arthur's breath quivered as she circled her legs firmly around his waist to pull him in faster, deeper. He was so grateful for it too. He sought to keep hitting that spot inside her that would bring her the substantial pleasure he wanted her to have. "I love you..." he somehow managed to muster, "God, I love you so much."
Gwen whimpered in delight, bringing her arms around him to hold him. He felt so hot against her. His skin was slick. His movements were feverish, maddening...
It all became too much to take.
She suddenly bulked her hips up harder than previously, using her legs to pull herself against him. They pushed against him and she screeched as the ecstasy hit her. He followed her seconds later, using her scream as the signal to release. His own groan was husky and relieved. He then rested his forehead against hers, their breaths blowing and tickling each other's faces.
He opened his deep blue eyes to meet Gwen's dark ones staring up at him. His hair was standing on end and she reached up to clasp it. They kissed softly, still connected and intertwined.
"I love you," Gwen whispered, finally responding to his declaration earlier. He thanked her by kissing her again, to which she said again with a soft smile, "I love you."
Arthur kissed her yet again. He was trying his best to stay propped above her but Gwen could feel his slick limbs shaking against hers. So she leaned up to kiss him firmly on the lips, so firmly that she pushed him onto his back and wiggled free of him.
Arthur landed in a heap beside her. They lay skin to skin, shoulder to shoulder. Gwen sighed tiredly; pushing him onto his back had taken more effort that she had expected. Her legs felt weak and her arms drained of strength. She loved feeling this way and she only ever achieved it after making love to Arthur.
After a few minutes Arthur opened his eyes. Gwen had laid her cheek against his chest, listening to his heart beat and stroking him slowly with her hand. He smiled faintly at the top of her head.
"Well," said Arthur, his voice back to normal, "That was more creative than usual..."
Gwen looked up him.
"Really?" she said, unconvinced. "I thought that time the other day was a little more creative than usual. Today was pretty regular for us."
He looked back at her, pretending to be offended. "This was only regular? I gave you all I had. Are you calling that just regular?"
Gwen laughed. "I meant in terms of creativity. In terms of pleasure-giving you were, to use the right phrase, 'spot on'. The other day was a little more... imaginative than today."
Arthur took a deep breath and exhaled loudly. Gwen smiled as she too was raised and brought down by the movements of his chest. Although what she had said was true he always tended to take compliments of this nature as a humorous attempt on her part to stroke his ego, to see if he would pretend modesty or pretend smugness. The question was which response he would choose.
He decided to tease her by asking about her use of the words 'creativity' and 'imaginative'.
"What was so imaginative about the other day?"
Gwen lifted her head and grinned.
"Well," she began, "for one thing we were in the throne room."
"Oh that!" he said, suddenly realising. "I'm surprised you even rated that on the scale of our imagination. It's not like it was pre-planned or indulgent."
She raised an eyebrow. "What would you have called it then?"
He shrugged. "I don't know—quick, entertaining and fun?"
"Oh ho," Gwen coughed, sitting up properly to look down on him. "What this wasn't fun?"
Arthur rolled his eyes. "Of course it was fun but not in the same way."
"Explain," she challenged him.
"Lie back down and I'll tell you," he told her, lifting his arm up for her to lie down again. Slowly she decided to obey and rested her head against his shoulder, returning her hand to his chest. His arm looped possessively around her. "Like I said this was fun but it was a lot more than that. Moments like this, when we do this it's... lovemaking."
He said the words 'lovemaking' as if he thought saying it would sound too poetic and silly. It was just the only word he could think of that vaguely fitted how he would describe it.
Gwen scoffed, uncertain whether to question him further or abandon his bed right now in protest. She decided to indulge him, hoping that he was building up to something, "Whereas the other day we were just... shagging in the throne room?"
Arthur detected that she was a little prickly at his assertion that the intercourse they had in the throne room meant less than the sex they'd had just now. He needed to pick his words carefully or risk losing her company in bed for the rest of the night.
"It's always an act of love," he told her with certainty. "It's the... dynamics that are different."
"If it's an act of love then to me we are still making love," she said assertively.
He took a deep breath again. "I agree, but like I said it's just that the dynamics are different. When we share moments like that day in the throne room, or that time during the feast for that visiting king, or when we did it under the bridge..."
"Arthur," Gwen mumbled against his shoulder.
He stopped making a list (which he realised to his delight was becoming quite sizeable) and decided to make his point. "Wouldn't you agree – being in love aside – we have those moments to feel... satisfied?"
"Isn't sex at least partly about gratification?" Gwen sighed.
"I suppose but that's not what I meant either," he said with a frustrated sigh.
Why was it so difficult to explain things? He had difficulty with most things but talking about feelings and intimacy was even harder. It usually took an evening of lovemaking before he found the guile to engage Gwen in so-called 'pillow talk'.
"I suppose what I really mean is," and he paused to think about it again until he came up with what he hoped would be a reasonable analogy that would prompt Gwen to finally lose her temper with him. "Moments like in the throne room are a bit like foreplay."
Gwen thought for a moment.
For the first time she understood what he meant. She didn't feel angry anymore, at least. After all she loved foreplay and in some ways found it just as much a declaration of love as actual sex if not more. It was common knowledge that some men didn't engage in foreplay that would specifically pleasure a woman either because they didn't know how or they simply didn't care.
Arthur hadn't been born with worldly knowledge about the female anatomy. Truth is he had known very little but he had cared and had wanted to know what worked and what didn't work. Gwen hadn't exactly been an expert in the male anatomy herself although she knew where everything was and what it did. Everything they knew now came from curiosity and experimentation, or as Arthur had called it 'creativity'.
"Oh," she said and snuggled against his chest. "I see what you mean now."
"Moments like in the throne room are... brilliant," Arthur added, to ram home the point. "Sometimes I just need you so much that I just have to have those moments else I'd never get another chance."
"I know," Gwen smiled. "On the other hand there is also an element of excitement; we were nearly caught by your father when cut through the hall to get to the council chambers."
"Good thing we were near some curtains," Arthur chuckled.
"Good thing I still had the presence of mind to draw them!"
They both laughed.
Arthur kissed Gwen's forehead. "I wouldn't give up moments like that for the world but there is just something about what we had tonight and other nights like it that feel different."
"I think I know what you mean," Gwen said in soft agreement. "Other moments are quick and fleeting – although I admit I still love them – but when we're together like this, making love at our own pace rather than someone else's it gives us a chance to..."
Now she couldn't think of the right word.
"Get into it?" Arthur proposed.
Gwen smiled, "That's probably the best way of putting it. I suppose."
And she loved it when they really got into it. They could take each other to the seventh heaven and back just by using their hands and tongues.
Gwen's eyes fluttered closed as she mused on the things they would do to each other. She thought of the way Arthur used his fingers to tease that part that she had known about but never realised the potential of until he 'discovered' it. Then when he applied his tongue to her it was indescribably good, the feeling of his breath and mouth pressed against the most intimate parts she possessed.
Of course, she knew that her breasts would always be Arthur's favourite part of her.
She was different in that she didn't have a particular favourite part of him. There were so many qualities to love and she to delight in them equally. She liked to caress his scars and his most sensitive spots; his neck, his earlobe and his chest.
Gwen had the most appreciation for the part of him that gave her the most pleasure and she always showed that appreciation by lavishing him with the same attention he showed her stroking and teasing, licking and sucking. She would take him deep, run her tongue along the length and kiss him at the tip. It was always make him bulk wildly against her, begging for mercy.
Then he would slip inside her so easily and they would fit together like two parts of a jigsaw. There was never anything forced between, every movement was free and what the other wanted. In some ways it was similar to when they kissed; they slotted together and clicked, as if they were meant to be joined one way or the other.
Gwen snuggled her cheek against his shoulder again and slipped her hand slowly down his body from his chest, across his quivering abdomen and down. It was as if she wanted to remind herself of what it felt like.
He hummed in approval as she ran the tip of one finger against the skin. "I love it when you touch me," he whispered.
She just smiled and slowly brought her hand back up to his chest.
"Arthur," she said after a while.
He smiled, "Yes, Guinevere?"
"I'm sorry I snapped at you before."
"It's fine," he chuckled, and took her hand and kissing the back. "Just as long as you understand I enjoy all forms of our love life, whether it's in the bedroom or the throne room."
"You were right about something else too," she laughed, once again reliving the bliss from earlier from their foreplay, to twangs of pleasure to the way he had moaned 'I love you' into her ears. "We can be very creative."