I kneeled down and pulled the last arrow from the lifeless sabre cat. I placed all three arrows back into my quiver and continued on my trek to Windhelm. I had hoped to not run into any more wildlife, I'm completely exhausted and just lifting my bow drained life from me. The wind was unforgiving and cut through me like a blade. The snow pelted me in the face and made it almost impossible to see. I wanted to lie down and sleep for the night, but I realized there was only another hour or so before I reached Windhelm and I would be able to sleep in my own bed and next to the warm body of my wife. The thought of her brought a smile to my face. I warmed when I thought of the first time I ever saw her.
It was the first time I had been to Windhelm. I was there to seek out work from the Jarl. I had heard rumors that there had been a dragon nearby that was terrorizing the town quite often. I felt it my duty as the dragonborn to take out the dangerous beast. The Palace of Kings was my destination and upon entering the building, I glanced around the room and toward the throne. There was a long dining table in the center of the room and that's where I first lay eyes on her. She was sitting at the table, hands in her lap and looking as if she were trying to ignore the group of Stormcloaks around her. She didn't look like she belonged among them, she was fair and dressed in fine clothes. Her dark brown hair was trailing down her back and her cheeks were stained a light shade of pink. I remember wondering why she was so sad. From first sight of her I felt very drawn to her, which was strange as I normally have no attraction to women outside my own race, but there was something so different about her.
I realized I was just standing there staring at her when Jarl Ulfric cleared his throat.
"Why does a Khajiit approach my throne, better yet why are you in my city?" He barked as he stood from his throne. It took everything in me to not shout him to pieces.
"I'm here for the contract about the dragon." I replied as he approached me.
"That dragon has killed many of my men, and you think you can take it on by yourself?" The other Stormcloaks boomed with laughter.
My blood was boiling with anger and embarrassment. I could see the brunette beauty shaking her head from the corner of my eye. How could a woman of her status have compassion for me? It seemed to me since my time in Skyrim, that Nords didn't like anyone who wasn't a Nord. Why would she be any different? Once he had finished his laughing fit he handed me the contract.
With his face still red from laughter he managed to stammer out, "Good luck."
Once I defeated the dragon with ease, I became Ulfric's go to man for defense. He didn't like me but he knew he needed me. I could take out entire groups of bandits in a few hours, while every other man he hired could do no such thing. Every time I would arrive to the Palace of Kings to pick up a new contract, she would have health and stamina potions mixed up for me. I started to fall for her hard, but I knew she would have no interest in me.
I looked at the ring of matrimony on my finger and laughed a bit to myself how at first I couldn't see her feelings for me. It was only a few months ago that I finally realized that after a year of doing missions and contracts for her father, the Jarl, that she did have feelings for me.
I had been gone for well over a month clearing out the mines in the Reach of Forsworn. When I arrived to collect my bounty it was night, I knew Ulfric might be sleeping but I chanced it anyway. I stepped inside, only to be greeted by Jarlief, the Jarl's steward.
"The Jarl is discussing plans with the soldiers. Please have a seat at the table, he will be out with your bounty shortly."
I sat at the table and looked toward Heulwen's room. She was most likely asleep. I longed to see her, just the sight of her would surely sate my frazzled head. My eyes were heavy, I hadn't slept in nearly forty-eight hours. I was started to doze when I heard a gasp behind me.
Startled from my sleep, I quickly stood from the table and turned to see her standing in the doorway, "Zaagan!" She exclaimed as she ran toward me with her arms open.
She held onto me and started to weep. I placed my hands on her face and tilted her chin upward so I could look into her eyes.
"Why are you crying?" I questioned as I wiped the tears from her cheeks.
"I didn't think I would see you again. You were gone for three months, I worried that you had gotten seriously hurt or killed!"
It was then that I knew she had the same feelings for me that I had for her. I pulled her closer to me and whispered that I loved her. It was joy to my ears when I heard her say she loved me too.
Our relationship is complicated one. Her father hates Khajiit, Argonians, Dark Elves and well basically any race other than his own. If he found out his only daughter was married to a khajiit he would more than likely behead me. Dragonborn or not, he still looks at me like I'm beneath him. It almost killed him to sell me Hjerim when I caught the Butcher. Heulwen had to wait until he was sleeping to go to Hjerim, which she considered to be her home.
My body filled with excitement when I saw the outline of Windhelm in the distance. After another mile of walking I made it to the bridge. I couldn't wait to see Heulwen. I acknowledged the guards on my way into the city. When I arrived at Hjerim I could see the faint glow of a candle coming from our bedroom. I sighed with relief; she was staying there every night waiting for my return. I dropped my bow and arrow quiver beside the door and stripped myself of my armor. There was a pot of warm water hanging over the fire so I took the opportunity to clean the blood and grime from my fur. Once I was dry, I dressed quickly and made my way to the stairs.
The outline of her body under the blankets was visible from the doorway to my room. She was sound asleep and breathing deeply. I blew out the candle and got under the blankets with her. I wrapped my arms around her, the heat from her body warmed me and I nuzzled the back of her neck. She sighed in her sleep as I traced my hands down her body. She woke slightly and rolled over. She pressed her lips to mine and pulled me on top of her.
"I missed you so much." She breathed.
"I missed you too. I love you."
"I love you too." With the small amount of energy I had left in me, we made love.
Almost asleep, I rubbed my hands all over the curves of her body not wanting to miss a moment with her. Not even to rest. Over the months that I've been gone, I noticed that her body had changed. Her stomach, which was normally flat, was swollen and firm. She placed her hand on mine and turned to face me.
"I'm four months pregnant, Zaagan." Her eyes were filled with worry. "What are we going to do?"
"Don't worry, love. We'll figure it out." I placed my lips to her forehead to try and calm her.
She won't be able to hide this for much longer. In all honesty, I didn't even think we could reproduce. I lay there thinking about what our child would look like. Would it be a mix of her and me? Or would it look completely Khajiit or Nord? With so many questions buzzing through my head it was almost impossible to sleep despite my exhaustion. After hours of trying to sleep I finally dozed off into a dreamless slumber. I woke slightly when I felt her stand from the bed. My eyes felt too heavy to open but I could hear her dressing. Once she was dressed she leaned over the bed and placed a kiss on my lips.
She whispered, "I love you, I'll be back tonight."
I managed to mumble and incoherent I love you too. She giggled a moment and kissed me again. I fell back into a deep sleep.