The Journey of Naamah: No Home to be Found

And Elua wandered the bosom of his mother Earth, and his Companions remained at his side through lands harsh and stony. Here the creatures of the earth tended him, or he would surely have perished, for many years they sojourned. In the plains of Akkad, padding lions led him to honey. In Tiroc Pass, a great eagle flew each morning, stooping low over ice and crags to drop a bright berry in blessed Elua's mouth.

~ Earth Begotten, by J. Carey

Many moons had passed since I met my greatest teacher, Mara, Naomi's daughter, and we all shared our woes with each other in the beaches of Bhodistan.

I had done all I could to keep Elua alive and well. When coin was low, or it needed to be exchanged for a different one, I went by myself into the nearest city.

Men would flock to me, just for the chance of touching my wings or hear my voice. They would pay good coin to bed me. I was an anomaly, and who wouldn't want the bragging rights to say they fucked an angel?

The first time I did this, the rest of the Companions were shocked and angry with me. Elua especially.

The night before, Elua and Shemhazai were talking about the amount of coin it would take to ferry us across the river that was the Bhodistani border with Akkad. We did not have enough; we had spent the last of our coin on a modest meal of bread and cheese.

The rest of our band was sleeping when I took my leave of our camp in the early evening. The sun had set, and Elua had suggested that we get as much sleep as we possibly could. But I had a solution to our plight.

I wandered into one of the city's streets, and saw other women sitting bare breasted on mats, clad in only the smallest of loincloths. Men fondled their breasts and cunts as they handed over their coin. I was simultaneously repulsed and washed over with pleasure. I knew this was where I needed to be.

I strode with a confidence I did not have to an empty mat near the corner of the street. I untied the tight sash of my scarlet robe, and then retied it loosely around my waist. One of my breasts was bared, as was the inside of one of my thighs. My hair I let loose from the braid I had had tied while traveling. My wings I kept slightly extended. I hoped I cut a provocative pose, but I was not sure. So many things about Earth still had me mystified, and what got a human man hard was one of them.

Everyone on the street began to stare at me. The whores, the clients, the would-be clients, the people engaged in the acts their coin had paid for. Everyone. The unnamed street was utterly quiet for the first time in centuries, since this place became the center of prostitution.

A tall, lanky man was the first to move. Wearing a long, blue robe with a matching turban, he strode with a panther like grace until he was kneeling before me.

"My lady," he whispered. "Why is someone so beautiful here, on the streets filled with the cheapest whores on this earth?"

"I'm a traveler, Sir. My fellow travelers and I have run into a shortage of coin. I have come to do what needs to be done." I smiled slowly, my eyes apologetic.

"I must admit, I'm intrigued. What's your price?" He laid one thin finger on the inside of my thigh, slowly tracing a meandering path closer to my waist.

My eyebrows shot up with shock. I fought to keep my voice even, but it turned into a high pitched squeak. "Price, Sir? " I cleared my throat. "What are you willing to give me, for your time with me?"

He laughed. "As much as you need to get where you're going, traveler."

I laughed softly, looking up from underneath my eyelashes. "1500 rupees."

"1500!?" He exclaimed loudly. "That's way too much!"

The girl next to me jumped, then started laughing. "Sir, can't you see? Look with your eyes! She is the most perfect being on this earth. And from the look of her, hasn't been tumbled very much by any human member!" She laughed, showing blackened teeth. "Take her price, and enjoy her. She'll give you more than any of us ever could."

He laughed, stood, and beckoned with a smile. "Come, my dear. Let's go somewhere better than this hovel."

~*~Elua~*~

Laying on my stomach, wings half extended, I basked in the aftershocks of lovemaking. He caressed the joint between wing and shoulder lightly, making me shiver in excitement and pleasure.

"Stop that. It tickles," I said, laughing.

"I would think," he replied, grinning. The grin fell as he sat up quickly.

"The matter … of your payment …" he muttered haltingly. "We agreed on 1500, yes?"

I nodded, turning a wry face. I moved to sit up, but he pressed a hand between my shoulder blades and gently pushed me back down. I complied, my eyebrows raised in puzzlement.

"I'm willing to double that, for another round."

My eyes widened, my lips parted slightly in shock. "You can't be serious. You didn't even want to pay me the initial amount, and now you're willing to double it?" Humans, I swear. They are such confusing creatures.

"Never will I meet another woman quite like you, Naamah. I intend to enjoy every moment in your presence as I can possibly pay for. Doubling your price is the least I can do."

I was shocked, but I turned on my side and laid a finger over his lips. "Say no more. You shall have your pleasure."

He began to suck on my finger, and the dance began again.

~*~Elua~*~

I left the inn with a heavy coin purse in the middle of the night. Dawn was some ways away – I would have time to make it back to our camp, and maybe get a few hours of well earned sleep.

Things did not work out how I had intended.

As I threaded my way through our camp, Elua woke up from his light slumber.

"Naamah! Where in the earth have you been? You've been gone all night!" He whispered harshly, but it was loud enough to wake Anael and Azza, who had slept in each other's arms. In turn, the rest of them woke. All except Eisheth, who muttered in her sleep and rolled over.

In answer to his question, and the questions in my companions eyes, I threw the clinking purse at Elua. "It will be enough, to get us across the Indus and into Akkad and beyond."

Kushiel smiled. "Elua. She has done us a great service in this."

"It was not necessary! Naamah, you should never have done this. Not for us."

"I did it for you, Elua. I did it for everyone here. And it was needed – we need to keep moving, yes? Bhodistan does not agree with us!"

"Let her have some pride, some dignity," Azza muttered. "Adonai made her this way, stubborn and seeking pleasure. You cannot lead a horse to water and force him to drink – it will never work."

Elua sighed, looking up at me with those violet eyes that seemed to penetrate the soul. "Please, don't do this again. Please."

"I will not agree to that. I will not have you begging on the streets and only receiving a few coppers. With this, I can pay for the next month of food and lodging. Now, if you'll excuse me, I would like to get some sleep before we go into the hostile deserts of Akkad." I went to my bedroll and lay on my stomach. Kushiel kissed the corner of my eye, and I drifted into a deep, satisfying sleep.

~*~Elua~*~

Suffice it to say that we traveled for many months after that night. Through deserts and over mountains. Elua's gift with the beasts of the wild fed us when we could not find food ourselves. Lions led us to honey and gazelles, eagles brought rodents and berries, and we survived.

A/N: I am SOOOOOOOOO sorry it took this long to update this! I've been in school, and have had no time to get anything done here. Stay tuned, do a story/author alert so you don't miss out on the next chapter, whenever I manage to have the time for it that is. Forgive me, but school comes first.

Elua bless and keep you, and Love as Thou Wilt