I rush into the library, rummaging about for the cylinder and the map while trying to quell the fluttering bursts of fear in my stomach. I look closely, desperately because I know my brother is coming for me. He will find me, I am sure of it; therefore I have no time to waste. Scanning the room, I find them on the table, right where Abraham left them, and in a flourish I toss them both in the fire, willing the two to burn before he arrives…..
But what about the crown piece? I exclaim silently. All of this must be done quickly so my brother will have not even an inkling of where they are. But where? Where to put the ancient artifact my father died trying to protect?
Wait a minute.
Be near me when my light is low; when the blood creeps and the heart is sick; and all the wheels are being slowed…
Aha! Fumbling almost with the ancient piece, I store it inside the poetry book and return it back to its slot in the shelves. Again I gaze into the flames, watching slowly how the wood around the treasures disintegrate happily while the cylinder idles there, growing hot and red from the heat. I allow myself a small sigh of relief; I could possibly delay his plans for a human holocaust. My face is warm, yet still I linger there, sorting through my thoughts; perhaps I should've let the crown piece also be consumed by the fireplace.
Assuming it safe, I turn around, only to give a sharp, frightened shriek as I stare into merciless eyes of amber, similar and yet foreign.
"How very quick you," he comments somewhat amusedly, freezing me in his inward eye. I silently stand aside as he reaches into the fireplace. Any efforts to impede the acquisition of the map and cylinder will result in a fight I may not be able to win.
"But it is of no importance," he continues, "the cylinder ….is very interesting." Grasping the cylinder tightly in his hands, he gazes at it for only a moment before setting it down on the table. My thoughts are consumed by two undeniable facts: one, that my brother has found the map which leads to the Golden Army, and two, that I must tread very carefully. The next few moments I spend in my brother's near monstrous, destructive company could mean everything.
He rolls the hot cylindrical figure on the table and my eyes widen in surprise. The cylinder did not contain the map, it truly was the map! So, what of the map which turned to ash only moments ago? Was the parchment simply something to roll the cylinder on once it cooled? I thanked the universe silently that my obvious shock did not show on my face or in my posture.
He then comments, "We will find the Golden Army… here. As for the crown piece… I know it's here." he turns to face me before coming close to my person, our foreheads nearly touching. I suppress a small shiver, and of fear or pleasure I simply cannot say.
"I can feel that much from you…. Father always tried so hard to shield your heart from mine." I can feel his breathe against my face, and as I tilt my head just so to let him stroke my cheek, gently, almost reverently, I am suddenly reminded how close we are, the strength of our bond as we come closer and closer still to each other. My eyelids close softly, and I remember that even in the presence of his hostility towards me, of the subtle feeling that I may have betrayed him; he is my brother and so much more. The tips of his fingers rest near my clavicles, and I at once suppress a moan, and of fear or pleasure I still can't say, as he tears himself away from me.
I realize, suddenly, that I miss him. That it has been far too long since he…. since I….
"It's in one of the books, and I will find it." he says, interrupting my train of thought. I shake myself a bit. Time to stop thinking of things that have long since passed. I watch him now, intently, as he watches me, waiting for the chance to make a move of my own.
He chooses a book at random, glances at it only a moment, a small smile creasing his face as he comments, "Blue . . . .! You always looked so beautiful in blue….." he throws the book to the ground with a loud, threatening thud and I jump so suddenly, so swiftly. His smile is not to be mistaken with his true feelings. He has my full attention, and the tender, tense moment we shared seconds ago dissolves like smoke. I silently believe he lowered my guard specifically, intentionally, so I could fear him.
I do fear him.
"Blue." he says again, opening yet another book with bitter fancy, and then continues with, "Poetry….. love…and lust. Only words, but I will find it." He looks up at me, eyes seemingly daring me, threatening me with the information, but my gaze does not waver and neither does his. I spare a quick look at the book that is still nestled between the others, the book that contains that damned, dreaded crown piece that has weakened our bond, and then at the emergency button, that glinting, shining red beacon of possible salvation, the one option that could possibly turn the tables for me.
Looking back at him, I know I only have one shot, one opening for the ball to be tossed back into my court. I move backwards, inch by inch, closer and closer to the device while my brother searches fruitlessly for the crown piece I am so near to.
Sensing my movements, he reaches for my wrist and pulls me close to him, his warm lips grazing over my cheek until a soft, sentimental kiss transferred his miniscule warmth to my entire body. I can feel my heart beating wildly, beating so hard one would expect it to beat and beat and beat until it beat itself to death.
"Am I really so evil you feel the need to move away from me, Nuala? Am I really so monstrous?" he whispers against the cartilage of my ear, slowly nibbling until he hears a moan break free from my lips.
Focus, Nuala, focus!
"Not evil," I tell him while gently laying my hands on his chest, trying to push him away, "only dangerous." My will slowly crumbles underneath his accusing, all-consuming stare. I notice dreamily that my head is lowered; not against his, but lowered. He lifts my chin, and our eyes meet.
"Dangerous?" he inquires, and I can't help but recognize how husky his tone is, how it is meant to lull me into a state of comfortable, temperate numbness. I nod a silent, desperate yes, for myself, my sanity because whatever he does in the upcoming seconds will be bound to make me lose my mind.
"To you? Never." his licentious, low tenor has become unbearable. But the first seeds of deceit are already growing inside my head. Perhaps I could dissuade him, move him away from the object of his desire; perhaps he will never see the little blue book in which I have stored the key to human peril. He places slow, butterfly kisses down my neck, each one stinging with passion. I feel the arousal between us both like a rose in bloom as suddenly as he does, and his butterfly kisses, after some time, turn into nips and tugs and licks and his name suddenly flows forth from my lips like a fountain, filling the air with the sudden, breathy echoes of his title, "Prince Nuada, Prince Nuada, Prince Nuada, my prince…."
His loving, affectionate pecks make their way to my ears, to my chin, my face, my cheek and finally my lips as I feel his and mine merge together like the perfect pieces of a puzzle. We follow a certain rhythm as his lips crash and grind against mine, his tongue invading and warming me, setting me aflame with desire I had not felt in a long, lonely time.
We break apart, and Nuada fills the grateful silence by saying, "Don't pretend you haven't missed this."
I couldn't pretend anymore than he could. He holds me close, wrapping his powerful arms around my waist as I stand uncharacteristically still, hearing his heartbeat through his armor and breathing his air.
"Tell me, Sister. Am I yours?"
I nod yes.
"And are you mine?"
He chuckles, and his laughter goes from full to morose, a broken sort of snickering, like a bitter, black, merciless joke.
"No. No, I am not." he says, and my lazy, nonchalant smile turns into a concerned frown. Could he be on to me? To my plans? I search amber eyes so familiar to my own to try to find an explanation, but to no avail.
"Of course you are. Who else if not you, Brother?"
"Someone. Someone else you love."
I almost back away from him in shock and more subtly, shame. I had grown fond of Abraham, but that fondness has cost me. I should've known better. I should've known that he would know. Does he think me treacherous? Unkind?
"But that, also, is of no importance. I must admit, Nuala, you are indeed my sister. I can sense the crown piece; it is near us both. Give it to me. Give it to me, and no harm will befall the one you desire."
"No." I voice, and suddenly I move backwards one more step, which is all I need.
I press the button, signaling my emergency, and as he rips my hand away, he questions me, searching, probing my eyes, "Why?"
For my fondness of another person or for my kiss of deceit, I know not which he questions.
But I gaze levelly back into his eyes, realizing that nothing will stop him in his path to destroy the humans. Nothing.
You know why, Brother. You know why.
This is my take on what happened in the library between Nuada and Nuala in Hellboy's the Golden Army. I figured that their bond could possibly make room for a somewhat incestuous relationship. That, and the fact that I wanted to see what happened between Nuada and the books and Abe and Hellboy talking about what was wrong with Liz. This is my first Hellboy fanfiction EVER. Enjoy!