Foreigners were amusing. Vastly amusing. The only visitors never to be bothered when they realized the role Aik and the others served, were the visitors from Havarin. Beynum had often commented that though they did not have concubines, the people of Havarin had everything else and so little fazed them.
Everyone else, however – vastly amusing. Some, after a few months, grew accustomed. They stopped staring, at least, and some even stop acting affronted. Aik was never certain why they were so offended.
It was not as though they were slaves. The King and Queen could ask men and women to join their respective harems, but they could not force. It was rare a concubine left the harem, but there were accountings of such recorded.
The new ones always provided the most entertainment, though a close second were those who never ceased to bothered and offended. Few were those who learned to accept, who came to understand.
They were possessions, but they were not slaves. Of all the people in the palace, they were closet to the King and Queen. After the King and Queen, they probably held the most power, even if it was a subtle, underlying power, rather than the active control of the Advisors and Council.
Aik calmly poured more wine and held it to Shah’s lips, the drank the last sip himself. An intimate gesture, always. People did not share wine dishes idly.
He was the only one attending Shah at this small meeting, more a relaxed lunch amongst acquaintances and would-be acquaintances. The Havarin man was one Aik had seen before, a not-infrequent visitor, though he was not precisely a politician. Something more subtle than that, though Aik had no precise name for it.
The other one was from Cortilla. Beynum said they were a country who seemed to think sex a bad thing, or at least made a good show of it, for they must continue to exist somehow.
It certainly showed in the man’s manner. He looked as though he would burst if Aik remained in the room much longer.
True to form, Shah pushed. He had no patience for people who would not handle their prejudices. There was plenty he disliked about the multitude of foreigners he entertainers every single day, but he did not show it or treat them the lesser for it.
He did not glare coldly and talk stiffly, and act as though it were the greatest of chores. Shah had no patience for ill-executed childishness.
Even the council could not deny that Shah’s mischief was always beautifully executed.
A hand smoothed up his back, carefully tracing every rise and fall, all the way and even more slowly back down, an easy smile on Shah’s face, but mischief making his eyes positively shine. Aik doubted anyone else saw it.
It was almost a pity Beynum or Witcher was not here. Beynum had an unrivaled talent for discomfiting people…and Witcher would do whatever was demanded, no matter who might be watching.
The soft touches continued a moment longer, Shah’s fingers dipping ever so briefly just beneath the waistband of his pants. Then the hand was gone, leaving his skin tingly.
Foreigners really were idiots, to be offended by Aik and the others. Smart men would be jealous.
Shah’s hand returned as the foreigners finally departed, this time with insistence, and Aik went gladly. Mm, he liked it when Shah kissed hard and hot, channeling his anger into something far more pleasant.
He pushed Shah back, then shoved the table aside, barely noticing as dishes fell and carafes chinked and rattled against each other.
“Did anyone linger to watch?”
“The affronted ones always do,” Shah murmured, then kissed him again, enough force to bruise Aik’s lips, but in an oh so pleasant way. “He could not tear his eyes from you, I think.” A soft laugh as Shah boldly shoved his hands down Aik’s pants, gripping hard, grinding them together. “He wanted to feel only disgust, but I think I know what thoughts will fill his mind when he strokes himself tonight. Hmm, my decadent monk?”
Aik snickered, then bent to exploring Shah’s throat, or what he could of it before cloth impeded his efforts.
He gasped as Shah pressed them together again, heat against heat, near scorching even through the fabric of their clothes. “Shah—”
“This would cause more lustful offense if you would dispense with our clothing,” Shah said, smirking.
Yes, his mischief was always so beautifully executed. Aik laughed and moved away enough to strip off his own clothes, leaving only the gold bands at his neck and wrists. Then he moved to attack the more intricate fastenings of Shah’s robes.
He leaned down for another kiss as he once more straddled Shah, feeding sounds of approval as fingers dug into his hips, his ass. Then fingers slid around to press inside, stretching, taunting. “I wonder if they would even know what to do with someone like you.”
Aik laughed, but with an effort, his attention more on what Shah was doing.
“I doubt it,” Shah said after a moment. “Now, my monk.” Aik groaned deep and long as he bore down on Shah’s cock, bracing his hands on Shah’s chest as he began to ride. Slowly at first, but with increasing speed and force as Shah began to thrust up to meet him, driving hard and deep. The world narrowed to heat and sweat and pleasure, and if prudish foreigners lingered still, Aik hoped they were enjoying the show.
He also hoped they were grateful Shah had not summoned Witcher as well. Likely they’d find expired foreigners in the hallway.
Shah wrapped a hand around his cock and pulled hard, and Aik did not even attempt to muffle his shout as he came, felt Shah tighten and shudder beneath him.
He collapsed atop Shah a moment later, panting, allowing the world to return in bits and pieces.
“I suspect,” he said at last, “that conversation will be abuzz during dinner tonight.”
Shah snickered and kissed him. “It is not my fault I have enough sense to make proper use of the blessings bestowed upon me.” He laughed harder as they slowly sat up and began to put themselves back in order. “If I recall, Cortilla is strongly religious. I wonder what stories they will tell now about monks in Tavamara.”
Aik just grinned.