Title: A new visitor at Luke’s shack
RP Thread Number: 56
When Occured: Between Sessions #23 and #24
Location: Luke’s Shack in the Warrens
Out of Game Date: Feb 24 – Mar 9th, 2019
Participants: Luke, Izzy, Rabbit
Original Thread: http://silkandspices.net/forums/index.php?topic=39.0
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Rabbit is sitting on the couch in Luke’s tiny hut. Reading a book with an oil lamp she has a happy smile on her face. Eating a simple but well made dinner, reading a racy book and listening to her love enjoying himself with someone else that he cares about. They had finished a short time ago and she could hear quiet murmurs coming from the bed. She hadn’t ever felt so peaceful with her life.
Rabbit cocks her head to the side and sets down her book. She sniffs the air and a briefly annoyed and upset look crosses her face before it quickly disappears. The smile is gone and she sits back waiting in the seat. The pleasant buzz had disappeared and all relaxation gone as she just waited.
A knock can be heard on the door, followed by a louder knock. It is loud enough to be heard by those in the bed and Rabbit.
Rabbit hesitates, unsure if she should answer it or let Luke deal with it. With the second knock Rabbit barks loudly to the bed, “You have a visitor Luke.” She then sits back and picks up her book ignoring the door, but unable to get back into the book itself or regain any peace she had.
Luke comes out from the small bedroom. Lately some makeshift curtains have been added to give the one room shack a “bedroom” like feel.
Luke, assuming it’s someone that needs his clerical help, steps out in a pair of pants, and pulls a shirt over as he smiles at Rabbit and goes to the door. Privacy isn’t something he’d ever needed before, but he wonders if the people he is with do need it now.
He opens the door, and says, “I’m home, I’m home. What can I help you with?” Although he has bequeathed his flock to a pair of Sekhmet clerics, he knows some folks still prefer to come to him directly.
A flicker of a smile crosses Rabbit’s face when Luke smiled at her. She couldn’t stop that reaction if she tried. As he opened the door though she sunk deeper into the cushions and the smile freezes on her face.
Luke sees Izzy standing in front of him. She is wearing a tunic and leggings with a hugely swollen belly on her small waist. She shifts when the door opens in long ago learned response and waits for Luke to step out. She looks unsure about herself being here. She knew she wasn’t wanted, and she was probably actively disliked by the people here, even with her lost friend, but she didn’t have a choice and this needed to happen.
She looks up at Luke, “I was hoping we could talk now that things are quieter and there aren’t surprises on either end.” She waits patiently for his response.
Luke looks a little surprised, but quickly recovers, “Of course. Of course. Come in, and we can talk. Everyone is much calmer today. I’m not alone, but I do have some great tea to ease some fo the late pregnancy aches and pains that is safe for the baby and you. I’d be happy to put on the kettle.”
Luke opens the door and motions her through. He turns to catch Rabbit’s eye to give her some warning about what is happening, but he doesn’t have much time for more than that. He’s sure Nesterim is smirking and listening intently behind the makeshift bedroom dividing curtains, listening with amusement.
He then motions her in and to the chair opposite Rabbit at his small table.
He spares a look around his small home. It fit his needs much better when it was only him. Perhaps Key was right, and he should move more primarily into the manner house. Maybe the way he lived was making others uncomfortable.
Rabbit shifts her feet to be in front of her, giving Luke room if he wants to sit on the couch as well. She sets down her glass of wine and book. There is only a brief hardness around her eyes as Izzy steps in, a tightening of her jaw and it is gone. She then gives Izzy a smile that is much warmer then expected and a nod. Calmly she looks at Luke, “Do you want me to leave Luke? I don’t want to intrude if its a worry.”
Izzy smiles broadly at Rabbit, there seems to be still a hope of a friendship in that smile. She doesn’t seem to mind the room’s condition at all, but she does seem to test the chair lightly to keep from falling. She does sit down and even with how athletic she is, she lets out a small grunt.
She looks over at Luke and smiles at him, she is actually happy to see him now that she knows he didn’t do this to her on purpose. She still wasn’t sure what his plan or move he was making with wanting to act like he wanted to be around the child. She had never seen a male take that tact before, maybe this was why Rabbit gave him doe eyes each time she thought he wasn’t looking at her.
Still uncomfortable she shifts and nods, “I have never had tea from the surface for pregnancy, I would love to try it.” Giving him a large smile she hoped portrayed her desire to work things out with him.
Luke shuts the door, and walked over to the kettle to set the water on, “We do have some things to talk about. I know I have a son coming. I want to be in the boys life. It’s important to me. I had thought my first child would be with Rabbit, but here we are. I hear that the Fey involvement in this is actually a portent of a more dire world situation, actually, from my father.”
Luke makes a small pot of tea, and finds himself rambling. He might look sure, but he’s always been an outsider to this, never the one to deal with it. His clerical healing took him into many awkward situations like this, but it was very different being on the inside.
“I hope you stay. Key is a woman of her word, and if she offered you asylum, then you have it. She would protect your house. She’d not be happy with slaves, though,” Luke rambles.
Rabbit seems uncomfortable, she isn’t sure if Luke intentionally didn’t answer her or if he is freaking out in his head as much as her and missed what she asked. She glances at the door, then Izzy then Luke and just settles deeper into the couch. When Luke mentions her and a child another flicker of emotion across her face that is gone almost immediately. Rabbit seems surprised at the comment about the fey, that wasn’t expected.
Izzy hesitates as she listens to Luke and even more at the desire to be involved with her child’s life. She picks up a hot cup of tea and blows on it. “I hope you understand if I have to keep Keyleth at arms reach. She seems to want to work things out, but I have to watch over things even more carefully now. I had never anticipated children at the same time. I am thinking I will take the offer though, it would her safer for my son up here.
She shifts slightly and uncomfortably as she looks at Rabbit and back to Luke. “I have never heard of a man wanting to be with their child. What I wanted to know is what are you expecting from me and from the child? I will not allow you to be part of his life and then disappear. His life is going to be hard enough not living the underdark..I apologize if I am seeming ungrateful, I thought about it and I really want to make this work, but only if you are serious. “
Luke waffles in the kitchen, and pours himself a glass of wine before sitting. He glances at Rabbit, who knows him well enough to see he’s concerned and unsure. He might look confident, but the signs are there for anyone that knows him.
“What I want is to be a part of my son’s life. Because he is my son. I know being a male member of my family comes with complications as well, that you need to know. All my fathers male offspring are generally murdered. I am the exception. He’s still active on his plane, and I feel any son of mine would be safer in Kokand amongst those that know this, and would protect him,” Luke says. “If you take Key’s offer, it will be safer because then I can use my resources to help keep the boy alive. My father already wants to send help protecting the child.”
“I am serious. I was raised by a mother that loved me and provided for me until I was 10. Then she was captured and executed, and I was tossed into an orphanage here because it’s not politically feasible to execute a 10 year old,” Luke says. “I don’t want a child of mine to grow up without my being a part of his life. We both lead difficult and dangerous lives and two parents are better than one. It’s just too likely one of us or both will die because of our professional interests. I doubt an orphaned son will do well in the Underdark. Here, I can make arrangements that the boy will always be cared for,” Luke says.
He realizes he is rambling again. He’s not sure how to arrange this.
“I don’t need you to love me, or even care much for me. I do want my child to know me, and to be in his life. I am serious about this,” Luke finally manages to say before taking a large drink of wine.
Rabbit watches Luke and becomes more concerned as he talks. Her worries about herself disappear and she leans over. Wrapping her arms around Luke she kisses him on his shoulder and his neck. “I love you, and this will work out. Your babies will be safe here.”. She turns to Izzy and in the same fingernails on blackboard guttural hissing almost comes out of her mouth as she says something to Izzy in abyssal. She finishes up by saying in drow, “We will protect your baby, you have my word on that. If you stay and let Luke be his father I will pledge to do whatever is necessary.”
Izzy watches Luke carefully as he talks. She doesn’t judge anything he says and she has to admit there is something attractive about him wanting to protect the child. She is a little concerned about the new threats, but surely it wouldn’t be as dangerous as what Rabbit’s mother is going to do when she finds that Izzy left the underdark. Then again the child would never be safe down there, only one child in five survives into teen years without political intrigue.
She is caught off guard by Rabbit’s words to her, concerned and a little surprised of what Rabbit offered and she does respond in Abyssal until Rabbit makes the second promise in drow and she gets quiet. Full protection of her baby would be worth almost anything to her. She looks back at Luke and realizes he is being quiet. She still isn’t sure what the best course of action would be.
Izzy nods to Rabbit and leans forward. She takes Luke’s hand that isn’t holding his wine cup and takes it. Her very warm hands the opposite of Rabbit’s normally chilly touch. She looks Luke in the eyes, trying to read the black sclera. “I kind of like you anyways. You treated me well and were concerned for me before all this. You seem concerned about our child, and you do appear to want to make this work. I am willing to try any way we need to keep him safe. What do you want, full shared custody? See him on the weekends and every other holiday? I won’t give you custody and leave though.” She stops talking, emotions seem to shudder through her, emotions she doesn’t seem qualified to have. She stops talking altogether and just sits there waiting for him to respond.
Luke spares a thought to Nesterim’s silence behind the curtain. That will be a discussion later.
He then looks at both women, “First, either stop hissing at each other in Abyssal, or teach me the damned language.” He points a finger at each of them with his wind holding hand.
“Second, I don’t want sole custody. I know what I’m capable of, and while I could do it, I’m not single parent material. I hear that’s a trait I might share with my father, if my half sister is to be believed. Would you consider living in Kokand? How much space do you need for you and your personal people? I don’t even know what numbers were are talking about?” I want to be able to see my son, see him grow, and be a part of his life. I’m sure you would probably be a better primary parent than I would. I’m still a stray cat in more than just religion, but I want to be his father as the upper world defines,” Luke says. rambling again.
“I was going to have children with Rabbit when we got her free of Despek Xwe, and I knew those children would be safe because they could live in Key’s and our manner here in Kokand. Most of those children will be female according to Ira’s painting, so I wasn’t as worried,” Luke says.
He sets his wine glass on the table, and pulls the rolled painting over, “See? She painted my future family, and I think your child is one of these two.” He unrolls it and shows her. “Sekhmet always finds a way to circumvent the rules.” Luke laughs.
He smiles nervously at both women.
Rabbit smiles broadly at Luke, obvious love in her eyes for him. “I will teach you anything you want my love. The more languages you learn the more we can mix and match and truly communicate the specifics.”.
Izzy smiles at the interchange between Luke and Rabbit and raises her eyebrow when he points at her. Her smile showing she thinks it is humorous. She listens intently to Luke and she seems even more pleased at the idea of Rabbit and Luke having children. She glances at Rabbit and speaks in drow, “Maybe we can be aunts together, just with Luke in the middle.”
She nods again as he underlines his desire to be the father. “I would like you to be his father, and I will do what is needed to protect him, and your other children. After all, any children Rabbit has would be my godchildren, at least I think that is the term your people use.”
She watches Luke as he pulls out the painting and cocks her head. She looks at the image intently, curiosity driving her. She looks up at Luke, “Where did you get this again? It feels like its part of the sacred web….” With that Izzy leans forward and touches her finger against the picture. This seems to cause Rabbit to sit up and watch more closely.
Luke smiles at Rabbit. He does love her, and maybe if they life long enough it would all work out.
He says to Izzy, “When we went to the Island of the Gods, Sekhmet sent my oldest daughter to me to act as my guide to the gods. On my second visit to become a paladin, Ira brought me a painting of my future. I am sure there is a lot of information painted into it. It’s not an absolute truth because the future is not cemented in yet, but it could help us. I am sure any daughter of mine, who was also a paladin of Sekhmet, would be looking for a way to bend the god’s rules.”
He smiles, “Think of it as a loose interpretation of the future.”
Rabbit smiles even more at the mention of Ira, the look in her eyes never changing for Luke. She doesn’t say anything, she just takes her right hand and intertwines her fingers with Luke’s left hand. She squeezes it. She hopes he can tell how much she loves him, she would do anything for him. He would just have to let her know he wanted it.
Izzy watches Luke as he speaks and Rabbit intertwining her hand. She isn’t sure what she should do. She has always been more concerned about herself… and maybe Rabbit and now there is something growing in her that she cares more about then anything but doesn’t know how to deal with it.
She looks at the image again and smiles. She notes some of the differences between the children and wonders aloud, “I will be honest, I don’t know what to make of all of this. Why you care for a child of mine, why the child is in the picture with other children, all acting as siblings and I am fairly sure more than just the two of you as parents, yet the image of you two are acting as if the parents.” She bites her lower lip, which seems to make Rabbit’s smile more amused then anything.
She notes the blonde elven male in the picture hanging awfully intimately next to Luke but doesn’t say anything directly. Just looks at Luke curiously.
Luke squeezes Rabbit’s hand, and says to Izzy, “Up here, there are a lot of men that are not just expected to be an active parent, but enjoy it. Men take joy in their children, and enjoy raising them.”
He looks to Rabbit, “You are from the Underdark, I have no idea how to explain this. It’s like explaining water is wet. I’m not sure what to explain other than I want to be a part of my child’s life, and have an active part in parenting him. Especially since he will be pretty much 50% devil because my bloodline is like 15/16th’s or something. He will have abilities that I am still trying to figure out for myself.”
Luke looks earnestly at Izzy, “He will have family with me. My family of my own making, like Salkya, Rabbit, Nesterim and my friends. My family on my fathers side, which will bring its own inherent dangers. I have also recently heard my mothers family still exists somewhere. That is an entire support structure for the child, and I think it would be wise to take advantage of it.”
Luke sighs heavily, not sure how to convey his interest so Izzy understands.
Rabbit sinks against Luke, she leans over and sniffles on him in that peculiar way she does. She then turns back to Izzy, “He will make an excellent father, he will keep this baby and any future babies you have safe. I will keep your babies safe. There is a lot of support here, far more than any household and your baby will grow to an adult, and maybe they will live past 100 years old. After all, I think Luke will live longer than that if what I am planning works out.”
Izzy isn’t sure what to believe. This is opposite of everything she has been taught, both for her people and about the surface. She looks Luke up and down and assesses him physically, magically and presence wise. She is pretty sure she likes what she sees, and Rabbit seems remarkably open about this. She was sure Rabbit would kill her for being pregnant by him, after all that is why she never contacted him.
She looks at the image again then back up to Luke, “What does that mean about us? What are we?”
Luke smiles and says, “I don’t know what we are. Ideally, at the least, we’d be able to be friends and partners to make sure that child has the best options we can provide.”
He shakes his head, “I have seen a lot of situations where unintended pregnancies had to be worked out by both parties. I was a cleric for years. Sometimes romantic partnership just doesn’t survive the first encounter for whatever reason. Sometimes there never was. The best parents can work with each other, though. It’s all about being able to work together for the child, ideally.”
“I hardly know you, and we did not expect this. What we are, is two people getting to know each other,” Luke says. “What that means will depend on how comfortable we are with each other, and who knows. I hope we can be friends no matter what, because I think the best parents are.”
Izzy looks over at Rabbit and asks in drow “Are you ok with all this?.”
Seeing Rabbit nod but before she hears her words she wraps her two arms around her very pregnant belly and smiles at Luke. “Would you like to touch your son?.”
She undoes her belt, pulls out the shirt and exposes a gigantic swollen belly. The pale skin reflecting the light in the room.
Rabbit hesitates momentarily caught off guard by her unusually emotional response to Izzy’s being pregnant. She crushes down the bit of pain, anxiety and jealously and a smile slides across her face. She pushes Luke gently, whispering in his ear. “Go visit your son my love.”.
Luke has touched an untold number of pregnant women. He’s helped women give birth, and helped provide comfort for the aches and pains that come with pregnancy. All that paled in comparison to a belly that carried his own child.
“Um. . . ” Luke says.
He slowly gets up, and rubs his hands unconsciously warming them before touching Izzy. He reaches out his hand, and places it on her belly. His gentle touch is practice and after a moment he feels her belly with a bit more care.
“What’s your diet been, and how much sleep have you been managing lately?” Luke’s face is filled with awe, but the questions come naturally to a man that was a healer for most of his adult life.
Izzy seems surprised at the gentleness yet professional touch of Luke and she gives him a large smile. A kick can be felt from her belly as the child moves within and seems to respond to Luke. Her eyes shoot open a bit surprised “He knows who you are I think. As for my diet… you probably don’t want that answer. I recently learned in the last couple of days that treatment of children here is far different. With him I drank what I wanted, ate what I wanted and wasn’t healthy.”
She glances up at Rabbit. “Somebody has … encouraged me to take care of the baby differently so now I am eating what I am told is correctly and refraining from alcohol.”
She seems annoyed by that last part.
Rabbit’s eyes unconsciously narrow as he touches her belly. She is happy he is happy and she is ashamed that she feels so much jealousy and anger about this. She stops for a moment, the voices are loud right now and she pushes them away. They lie. She concentrates on Luke and the voices recede and the warmth of his presence pushes the chill away. Her smile comes back and she watches.
“Well, let’s go over what you consider healthy,” Luke says. His voices takes on a steady patience that comes from years of practice.
He patiently goes over Izzy’s expectations and knowledge, and reinforces what would be best for her and the baby. He asks how she wants to do about the birth, and helps her plan a midwife from the Sekhmet temple.
“Is this your first?” He asks her. He is aware of Rabbit, but there is a baby here, and the mother and child do take precedent over his and Rabbits conflict. Rabbit will be able to wait a few while he gets to the bottom of this, and prepares the best he can for Izzy to have the baby.
Izzy seems happy to go over how to handle pregnancy. Her explanations of childbirth in drow seem almost unreal in the unnecessary harm that happens. She seems caught off guard by how pregnancy is treated here, but also pleased.
Once she gets the rundown from Luke she leans forward and takes his hands in hers. She looks at him seriously, her eyes darkly tent. “I promise this was never done to you by me. I don’t know why it happened, I don’t know why me and not Rabbit, and I want you to know you have whatever freedom you want. There is no obligations I hold you too.”
Her gaze flickers at Rabbit, as if she is watching something that caught her attention before going back to Luke.
Rabbit’s listens intently to the conversation. Noting how pregnancies are handled, what is recommended and what should be avoided. She seems proud of Luke though, proud of how he is handling this especially. When Izzy takes Luke’s hands, Rabbit picks up her glass of wine and takes a drink. She watches and smiles at them. Thinking to herself that she is glad they get along.
“I know. Neither of us planned for this or expected it. The Fey are playing games, and this is the outcome. I appreciate you being willing to work with me on this,” Luke says. “If you are willing, the Sekhmet clerics and healers are really good at this, and have very high survival rates. We go all out for mothers and babies.”
“Are you willing to stay at the manner house here in Kokand?” Luke asks. “I’m still not sure how much room you need for your house.”
As Rabbit remains quiet in the corner Izzy smiles at the Tiefling. “As it turns out, I have a household of one plus a half.” She motions to her belly.
“It seems my requirements are incredibly small at this moment. Maybe if I can reclaim my house in the future, but I don’t think that will be happening by myself. I got word that one of Rabbit’s younger sisters has taken that household, at least until she is dead. If she dies I can reclaim it and bring my people here. Until I do, they are nothing more than a slave house as the Ara’bund empire expands and they bring their own people over to rule.”
She seems upset by that, but quickly clamps it down.
Luke looks saddened, and say, “I am very sorry for this. I know Drow politics are brutal. I will make sure you have what room you need at Key’s Manor house, as that is the most secure. With your background and mine, it might be safe to have a place to retreat behind walls.”
Izzy waves off the words as if it doesn’t bother her, contrary to her emotional outburts moments before. “It is nothing to worry about Luke, I am alive and that means I still have a chance to get back at House Ara’bund. It is what makes my people stronger Luke, conflict sharpens us until we are weapons, capable of eliminating those in our way.” She shuts her mouth tightly, ending it as if she was reciting a mantra. She then smiles at Luke, warmth in her eyes as she continued ”
She looks over at Rabbit, her hand shoots out and is placed in front of Rabbit’s face in a cupped manner. She mimics a protective yet possessive lilt in her voice as she issues a command in drowish. “Vess! (meaning spit in common)” the words are preceded and followed by a high pitched sound, almost a clicking in Abyssal. She hesitates for a moment and says it again, using the same intonation and tone, “Vess!”
Rabbit doesn’t seem to realize it as she leans over and on command spits out a tooth she had been playing with her tongue in her mouth. A dimness had momentarily entered her eyes, like that of the eyes of a doll but left almost as quickly when she completed the command. Rabbit smiles at Luke, not realizing she had spit out a tooth that he can see is missing on the back right bottom of her mouth, replacing it was another tooth more at home on a shark. This makes 3 teeth like this in her mouth at his last count.
Rabbit smiles at Luke, “I am hungry, do you mind if I make some more food?”
Izzy sighs, “She is always hungry when I have to do that, I never understood why.”
Luke stares in disbelief for a minute ignoring the rest of his interaction with Izzy, and says, “Rabbit? Izzy just commanded you to spit out a tooth. . . ”
He watches disapprovingly at what just transpired. He waits for Rabbit to realize what just happened.
Neither Izzy or Rabbit seem to understand the concern in Luke’s voice.
Rabbit seems confused by Luke’s concern for a moment. She runs her tongue along the sharp tooth in her mouth. She seems slightly confused and then annoyed, then angry as she looks at Izzy. The anger shuts off as if turned off with a flick of a switch, and almost as quickly is replaced with a smile, “I guess I was playing with it too much, she gets annoyed at little sounds I sometimes make with my body. She hates humming and singing to myself.”
Rabbit seems to be getting anxious, worried that she might have upset Luke. This worry however isn’t Rabbit’s normal reaction, it is almost as if she is worried about offending someone above her in station. Not her worry that her lover might be upset.
Izzy seems equally confused by Luke’s response, “Is something wrong? She was going to cut her mouth if she played around with that tooth and didn’t just get rid of it.” A look of understanding crosses her face.
“I forget, you weren’t around the last time she grew the teeth. She has a bad habit of chewing on it and cutting her mouth to ribbons. She won’t let it go if it feels weird and she will pick at it. Same happens whens she sloughs skin and the tattoos start appearing. She will not stop picking at her skin, no matter what you command.”
She does seem to realize something, “You still haven’t learned the technique yet have you? I can teach you if you want Luke. You are going to learn Abyssal anyways. It is helpful to get her from being stubborn and doing annoying things that can hurt herself.”
Luke’s face is still. Gone are the jovial smile, and humor that is ever present in his eyes. He doesn’t show any anger, just stillness.
“Izzy, Rabbit is not an animal. I will never use magically induced commands on her. I deal with Rabbit as an equal. When she is in a berserk rage? I walk to her and hold her until it passes. When she is sure or hurting, I comfort her. When she has problems I help her decide how she wants to deal with them. I will not now, or ever, use commands on her,” Luke says.
He then looks to Rabbit, “You were furious at her using a command to spit that tooth. It was fleeting, and gone within seconds. After you killed your first handler, was your oath expanded to include behavioral control? You should think about that,” Luke asks before turning back to Izzy.
“Also, Izzy, You might consider your actions. That oath that protects you from Rabbits anger? It will be gone soon. Treating her like a dog with no consideration for her autonomy might be unwise. Rabbit’s body is hers, and she is aware of her teeth. When she wants to fix them, we do,” He finishes.
He closes his dark eyes, and breaths in slowly and releases it, “The owner – slave-like relationship you once had with Rabbit is not the relationship you will have in the future, and you should consider that very carefully.”
Rabbit blinks when Luke talks to her and anger once again flits across her face. The rage she sometimes feels is evident when her mouth draws back and teeth are exposed. Then it is gone again, the emotion of anger seems to immediately drain away and she smiles and shrugs. “It is nothing my love. She is just taking care of me.” She loves Luke so much, why doesn’t he understand Izzy is just taking care of her, she is good at that.
The singing is gone, the voices have changed. The hissing is back, the smells of the desert have gone away, in its place is the smell of decay. She knows she is a broken creature, she can’t be trusted on her own.
She deflates in her seat, as if the wind is taken out of her. The world is better off without her… Luke was better off. The look of despair flashes across her eyes, and just as quickly as the anger that emotion disappears, all voices and smells disappears and she is the weapon. The only thing that hasn’t disappeared is how much she loves Luke, nothing else matters. She smiles at Luke and her love is evident, “Don’t worry my tree. I am fine.” She gives him a large smile as if she was fine.
Izzy sits back and listens to Luke intently, watching him, assessing his words. She watches Rabbit’s reactions too and seems to make a realization. A mix of emotions crosses her eyes as well and she isn’t sure how to handle it. She is finding she is upset at herself and she doesn’t know why.
“I love Rabbit and have never meant to harm her. She has problems taking care of herself. The maidens become more and more unable to care for themselves as they start to ascend. They are far more powerful as they move up, especially after their pact. It is a trade off of their connection to the abyss and the demons therein.”
She shifts and looks away, uncomfortable with Luke’s gaze. “Her restraints were quadrupled after she killed Felyndiira, who was the daughter of one of the most powerful houses. She was too powerful to squander, and her mother wanted to keep her for her own reasons. Felyndiira wasn’t the only drow she killed before her updated restraints were laid on her.”
She looks at Luke, she so badly wants him to understand. “I mean her no harm, I mean you no harm. I have taken care of her for almost two hundred years, seven times longer than you have been alive. She needs the help. You haven’t seen her fall into a pile and mewl like she was falling apart literally. Sometimes she rots, sometimes she burns and if you don’t have the ability to control her reaction she might have a meltdown. The process is overwhelming she goes through. I promise I don’t think of her as an animal. I want to e. close to both of you.
Izzy seems serious, and her words seem truthful, but Luke can tell she doesn’t realize the inherent position she took with Rabbit and what it means. Drow society is a full caste system and she doesn’t seem to understand her view isn’t from the outside.
Luke looks around and spots one of the ever present cats in his home. He picks up the fattest, and puts it in Rabbit’s lap. He pets the cat, and then rubs Rabbit’s head.
“It is something. You are worth more than that. You do not need care like you are a thing that misbehaves. Whatever you used to be, this thing happening to you now is the demon of the abyss reaching to control you. Soon she won’t be able to reach across to you at all, and there will be no command that can control your behavior,” Luke says.
He returns his gaze to Izzy, “She can take care of herself just fine. Whatever your relationship was, it won’t be that way now. Don’t use commands on Rabbit again. We are doing all we can to free Rabbit. If we are lucky, we can work around it to free her, but I’m not opposed to killing Lolth’s handmaiden myself if need be.”
“Forcing behavior with command controls over a person’s emotions is a violence done against them. It does harm,” Luke finishes.
He catches another fat cat, and piles it on Rabbit’s small lap as well.
Both cats rub, purr and show affection to Rabbit who has wrapped her tiny hands around them. She pulls both of them up against her chest in what would be otherwise hilarious size comparison and she pushes her face between the two of them.
Luke notices as both he and Izzy talk, that the cats are trying desperately to reassure Rabbit by rubbing and playing with her. He can see her shoulders occasionally shudder in what appears to be barely controlled sobs as she presses her face into their furry, warm, and large bodies.
Luke can almost make out what she is murmuring into them, it sounds an awful lot like apologizing to someone not here. The continual ‘I am sorry’ almost a drone of sound coming from her.
Izzy is quiet as she listens to Luke. No anger, resentment or annoyance on her face. She just wants to understand what this is and it seems so hard for her, or maybe it is too easy. When it is too easy it means someone has you fooled. She cursed House Ara’bund, and her people in general silently.
She takes a deep breath, exhales and begins talking, “I am sorry to have done that with Rabbit. I wasn’t thinking when I did that, it was just muscle memory, habit, whatever the right common word is for it. I only meant her to stop chewing on something that will cut her severely. I don’t want to treat her like a slave, but I don’t know how to not treat her like a handmaiden.” Izzy seems ashamed of that last response and looks down.
“You haven’t seen her sometimes, you might react differently if you had.”
She looks up at Luke, “I care for her, and I want to be close to both of you. I am sorry for that. It was unthinking.”
She turns towards Rabbit and she struggles to push down her alarm at Rabbit’s current response, “What is wrong with her?” She has an edge to her voice, like she has seen this before and is now wary.
Luke nods approval at Izzy’s apology, “She’s not okay. She’s attempting to leave the abyssal influences that fuck with her every time something like this happens. That demon’s touch is present in everything that happens. She’s not allowed to show anger, clearly. I think when you used the command, it forced a different emotional state onto her. One that is contrite, horrified, and filled with apologies. In less than a spare few minutes I’ve seen her furious with you, to have it wiped away by outside forces in the form of some inlaid command response. Basically those commands fuck with her head far deeper than to just spit out a tooth.”
Luke turns and knees his tall form down to be eye level with Rabbit. He wraps his arms around her and the cats that are trying to help.
“There are no apologies needed. You have done nothing wrong. This is a part of your pact. This feeling has nothing to do with you. You need to know that,” Luke says. “I love you. Nothing you face, nothing that go through, is going to change that, okay?”
Izzy quietly watches Luke and Rabbit. She is having a hard time understanding what is going on. She is alarmed at Rabbit’s reaction, worried for her and for some reason worried about Luke’s safety near her.
She whispers to Luke “Can I help?”
Rabbit looks up at Luke, pain wracking her face, tears rolling down her cheeks. Between hiccuping sobs she leans up and desperately tries to kiss Luke.
“I am so sorry for everyone I have killed.” She shifts around as if she is feeling bound. Like her namesake she seems ready to bolt but the cats don’t move and a third even larger cat crawls into Luke’s arms and on top of her. Almost as if they are preventing her from running away.
“I liked it Luke, I fucking loved it.”
Her sobbing continues, tears, snot and heavy breathing seeming to just be part of her right now. In gulping breaths the only word she can get out seems to be, “Monster.”
Luke holds out a finger to Izzy to wait. He can’t trust Izzy’s instincts won’t accidentally hurt Rabbit.
He’s also aware that Nestrim is still on his bed listening to all of this, and it’s gotten incredibly awkward to ask him for help in front of Izzy, and might make Rabbit embarrassed later.
“No no no no. You are not a monster. You were taught this way, and had the pact of a demon coursing through you. It is clear to me these ties on you control your emotions as well, and I think the best way to control a handmaiden would be to make her like it. Has it occurred to you, that your pact might allow you to feel Despek Xwe’s own emotional makeup?” Luke says.
“I am not saying some of it isn’t yours, but that Despek Xwe built on it, and opened that up to full force when you probably would never have felt that much of it. Lolth’s avatar acted like she had little control over Despek Xwe. She also seemed very careful about her, and could not compel her to give you up. She’s replicated that relationship in Drow society. Because replicating a dangerously sociopathic murderer with no remorse is such a great idea. . . ” Luke says with derision.
“I think, left to your own devices, you would have never followed this path. It took ‘training’, drugs, and abyssal pacts to get you to do this. You would have never done any of it if not for the environment that brutalized you, and forced you to be a slavish weapon to someone else’s needs,” Luke says.
“You were a victim just as much as the people you killed,” Luke says, kissing her head. “I love you. I know what you have done, and I still love you. I saw everything in your history when I did the first spell to free you. I know more about what you’ve done, and how it made you feel, than anyone but you, and that doesn’t change my opinion of you,” Luke says.
He rearranges the large cat, so that it isn’t actively wobbling all over their heads, and smoothes Rabbit’s hair down.
The curtains to the bed are silently moved out of the way as a tall slender elven male steps out. Putting a finger to his lips he quells Izzy’s surprise and he walks over to where Luke and Rabbit are. Not a single hesitation or grimace as he leans over, wrapping his long arms around both Rabbit and Luke and he just holds them. Luke can feel Rabbit freeze for a moment, and for that moment an uncontrollable fear that she would kill everything seems to exude from her, but eventually the smell of the desert permeates the room.
He whispers reassurances that are the most calming words Luke has ever heard come out of Nestrim’s mouth. There seems to be a tender and practiced tone to them, as if he has done this many times over the decades. Luke is sure this is probably the voice and words he uses for Alluvian and her spells. He leans over and kisses Luke’s head gently, then down and does the same to the top of Rabbit’s head.
Luke can see Nestrim mouth words to Luke, “I am here for anything you may ever need, and she is part of our family. I am here for this as well. Whatever you need you just tell me.”
Izzy freezes at the sight of Nestrim, ready for combat she eases once she realizes who he is. She watches his movements and reassurances and cocks her head, an intent expression on her face as she leans forward to watch. She looks up where Luke’s finger had been and stays in her seat and says nothing.
Rabbit loves Luke so much it is near bursting. She can feel the rot and blood smell fade slightly when she smells Nestrim before feeling him. Her body tenses into a coil of violence, held back only by Luke’s embrace and the feel of the cats on her lap. The odor rushes back to her stronger then it has in a long long time.
Luke and Nestrim can both smell a faint odor of rot, blood and wounds in the air get sharper. Quickly replaced by the smell of the deep desert, the smell of an oasis and shade sheltering them. The blood and rot smell fade away from the air, taking the longest to leave Rabbit’s skin.
Rabbit relaxes and sighs heavily. She just puts her arms around Luke, with an occasional pat on Nestrim. “I love you my tree.” is all she says the entire time.
“I love you, too,” Luke says and kisses Rabbits head.
He turns to Izzy and makes a soothing hand motion to her to sit, and it’s fine. Izzy and Rabbit were like two children that were raised in complete brutality with no notion of how to heal from those wounds or how to stop from engaging in the behaviors with each other.
He looks up gratefully at Nesterim and say simply, “Alluvia?” Lukes smile lights up when he looks at Nesterim. He is grateful that Rabbit and Nesterim are working out to be friends at the least.
Nestrim winks at Luke playfully and nods, “Alluvia.” He hugs both of them and continues the reassurances as Rabbit’s tension seems to ease.
Izzy sits back down, unsure what to say or do. She had never before seen someone held when they were upset like this. True, Rabbit would sometimes hold her, or her Rabbit when they were coming down off the drugs and combat, but it wasn’t the same. You weren’t allowed to cry in the Underdark or they would see the weakness and kill you.
Was this weakness though?
Rabbit’s tension eased out like the receding ocean and she looks up at Luke, wiping her eyes she is now redfaced and looks down. “I am sorry, I didn’t mean to do that. I love you so much and this is what I do” She seems embarrassed not for herself but that she might have embarrassed either Luke or the group.
She takes a couple of deep breaths and the normal Rabbit seems to be returning. She looks up at Nestrim, bites her lip but says nothing as she returns her gaze back to Luke. She seems to be waiting some sort of judgment.
Luke leans over and kisses Nesterim on the cheek, “I lucked out with you. Best game of gay chicken I’ve ever played.” He smiles warmly at the elf.
He then smiles at Rabbit, and ducks his head down to look her in the eyes, “I love you. This is not a weird behavior. This is what the pain of being forcefully tied to an abyssal being does. You are not weak, you are not an embarrassment. I love you, and we will get you free.”
He leans back, and says, “I think having that command tossed at you forces you to reconcile your own reactions to the reactions that the control commands force you to carry out. That is probably terrible. I am so sorry this was done to you, and I will do whatever I can to free you.” He smoothers her hair back, and asks, “Do you want some of your favorite tea? Or a glass of that wine you liked so much? Nesterim and I didn’t finish it off, so there’s still some left.”
He smiles at Nesterim, comforted that the man is willing to prioritize Rabbit in her time of need.
“I really am the lucky one here, I don’t know why you two put up with me,” He says.
Nestrim still is rubbing Rabbit’s back but he leans over and gives Luke a quick kiss, “That game of gay chicken was the best choice I have ever made. Rabbit is important to you, so she is important to me. You are going to have children and I want to be part of your life. This is far far more serious then I ever imagined it would be.”
Izzy doesn’t move or say anything, she just watches it unfold. She was amazed that Luke had an Elven High Noble and a Drow Handmaiden fawning over him. What was different about him? Was was she interested in him? She pats the baby gently and smiles but says nothing as she thinks.
Rabbit relaxes more and smiles at Luke, “I would love more of that wine, and maybe tonight for you to hold me.” Her eyes are huge and focused on Luke, they are whirling in that low glow they often have when emotional.
She looks up at Nestrim for a few moments then back at Luke. She seems to be measuring her words, testing her thoughts to see if she was ok with what it means. The idea of letting Nestrim into their life so close bothered Rabbit months before, but over the last few months he has gone out of his way to talk with her. Luke has done nothing but do what he can as well. Also, something changed slightly in Rabbit. The jealousy she felt at so much in the world seems to be falling away and she found she was happier for it.
She waves her hand as if it means nothing, “If we all three ever share a bed, it doesn’t have to be for sex it could be just that we both want to sleep next to Luke, I get to sleep on the outside. If we get attacked we will all die if I am not the one in between the door and us.”
Luke smiles at Nesterim, “I do love you.” He says it with a calm smile and no fan fair.
Then she moves to the counter and pours a glass of wine for Rabbit.
“You would be worried about my death, even when we are sleeping. It would be nice to share a bed, but I doubt we are all ever going to be in the same place at the same time, all the time,” Luke says.
He looks around the home, and how small it is. Then his eyes land on Izzy, and he smiles at her. “I am going to need more room here if there is going to be a baby. It was too small if I was going to have lovers anyways. I suspect the Wizard Tower can help with that, I’ll see if I can sort that out,” Luke says.
“No commands for Rabbit anymore,” Luke says to Izzy. “They exact a deep cost, as you can see. I understand you were also raised in a world that valued power, but maybe you could use this time to reflect on the differences in cultures here in Kokand, and see how the other half live?”
Nestrim watches Luke quietly, “I love you too.” The words are quiet, serious and carry a lot of meaning. He does look down at Rabbit as he steps back and makes himself comfortable. “You don’t have to protect us Rabbit, but if it helps me be allowed to sleep with Luke at the same time I am happy to let you take the outside.” With that he leans forward and gives her a peck on the cheek, there is a brief hesitation as he expects violence but when none comes he sits back on the couch and smiles.
Izzy listens to Luke and nods. “I will restrain myself, I am so sorry for that.” Her eyes glance over to Rabbit and her guilty look gets bigger. A smile crosses her face and she looks back at Luke, “Although I should point out that close to half of the people who live in Kokand would gladly take advantage of commanding. Surface world isn’t too different from the Underdark.”
Rabbit hesitates at the peck on her cheek by Nestrim, she is confused, scared and unsure what she should do. All she wants is to be with Luke. “I worry about your death every minute of the day. I worry about your health when you go out carousing, I worry about you not eating enough because you forget to eat when you help others. I just worry.” Rabbit shrugs and sits on the couch near Nestrim. She swings her feet over and places them across Nestrim and he just sighs.
Luke makes a face at Nesterim, “It’s not like elves really sleep, so I’m the only one that will be sleeping. You all just read or meditate or whatever while I’m snoring. I think you catch up on paperwork when I sleep next to you.”
He smiles at Izzy, “I was meaning more to look at the good you see the different races in how they deal with each other. I suspect the is there with the Drow too, but not in the social classes you and Rabbit were a part of. There are terrible people everywhere, but you are no longer in the class of people vying for each others demise. It might be good to just take a good look at how the good people in Kokand treat each other, and their children. I think outside of your class structure, this might be quite different.”
Luke hands Rabbit the wine glass, and says, “You worry like a mother.” He smiles.
Izzy just quietly nods to look while the rest speak Nestrim laughs “It is worse than sleep sometimes. When its a hard trance you don’t know what is going on around you and won’t be woken like a light sleeper” He turns his gaze to Rabbit then back to Luke. “I think Rabbit is sleeping more and more, it is something happening to our people too. Instead of a trance. A lot of the religious are saying end of days… Not that I would know. So yes I want my space on the bed” He gives Luke a warm smile.
Rabbit smiles at Luke and takes the drink. She takes a large gulp with her tiny mouth then looks back up at Luke. “I can’t really get into a full trance anymore. I can do it for short term and it helps for awhile, but at some point I always find myself waking up somewhere with incredible dreams fading from my head.” Rabbit moves her feet around more than is necessary on Nestrim’s lap, a bit of a smile as she makes him have to adjust so much.
Luke says, “Welcome to the world of sleep, I guess. It’s a thing the rest of us mere mortals do.” He smiles, and pours the last of the wine into his glass, before sitting back down.
Nestrim playfully glares at Rabbit and her feet. He wasn’t sure how such a small girl could stretch so far across a couch like this. He settles so his hip is against Luke’s on the couch, leans over and kisses Luke’s neck affectionately. He then turns towards Izzy and watches her from his vantage point. “Have you two decided on a name yet? Is the boy going to be accepted by you Izzy if he has horns?” That last comment comes out a little more aggressive then Nestrim meant, but he knew how drow treated halfbloods and Izzy seemed to hold a lot of the drow failings as part of her still. He wouldn’t let anything happen to Luke’s blood.
Rabbit’s playful shifting stops as her attention turns fully on Izzy. Rabbit snakes her right hand down to Luke’s free hand and squeezes it. He can feel the tension like a spring building up again. She won’t attack if Izzy says the wrong thing, but she seems to be preparing to do something else.
“You wouldn’t be considering the ritual of B’nossta d’seke vlos would you?” Rabbit’s eyes are narrowed and watching every movement on Izzy.
Luke’s understanding of drow is more than good enough to understand the words meaning the ‘rebirth of true blood’ but he hasn’t yet learned of anything called that.
“Of course he’ll have horns. He’s practically half devil. Don’t worry, they come after birth,” Luke smiles at Izzy as a way to take the edge off Nesterim’s word’s. He watches for her reaction though.
“Wait, what’s a rebirth of true blood? That sounds terrible!” Luke looks at them all.
Nestrim watches Izzy’s reaction, trying to determine what she would be like as a mother. Izzy gets a look of relief at Luke’s words about horns, but gets quiet when he asks about the ritual. “I haven’t decided yet. It can be done in the first year, especially if the horns aren’t obvious, without much risk.”
Rabbit is watching Izzy as well, but her words are for Luke, “Being pregnant isn’t uncommon for our people. We are a lot more fertile then surface elves, some thing it is to offset how dangerous the underdark is. That being said, it isn’t unknown for a drow mother to be impregnated by a non-drow. Sometimes, a woman that is higher up can perform a ritual that will call forth Lolth’s and Vhaeraun, Vhaeraun being the god of drow males, and they would cleanse the child of the non-drow taint. Basically reshaping their body painfully into that of a drow. These children are often thought of as blessed depending on who the father was. Often the mother doesn’t tell anyone else, because even if they are blessed they are usually treated poorly.”
She shifts uncomfortably, “I have seen it done, it is horrifically painful to the child and leaves them mentally unstable.”
Luke looks slack jawed at Izzy, “Do not do that to our child, please. That is horrific.”
Both Rabbit and Nestrim become quiet and turn their attention fully to Izzy. While they may be polar opposites as elves, both of their eyes become stone, unyielding and blocking out all emotion as they watch.
Izzy watches look for a few seconds, taking in his words and thinking. She taps the fingers of her left hand on a belt that has no sword in what appears to be a subconscious gesture of thinking. “Would you love your child if he appeared 100% drow? Or is it only because the child would resemble you that you want to be part of his life? Don’t get me wrong, if that decision comes up, I would come to you and talk about it. I haven’t decided on anything. Before I came here I was going to do the ritual, because a half blood drow male gets treated a lot worse than a drow male in the Underdark, but that isn’t what I am doing now so things have shifted.”
Luke looks offended, “This isn’t about how he will look. It’s about a ritual that puts the baby through agony and compromises his mental stability. I could care less if he looks like you or me. I care about an infant innessarily being hurt. I’d care if he came out looking like a bullfrog. As long as he is healthy, I’m happy.”
Luke looks a little lost for words.
Izzy seems and feels frustrated and she didn’t know why. Why should she care what a man wants, it is her baby, her choices. Yet she cared a lot. She takes a deep breath ”Please don’t be offended, I already said I hadn’t made a choice. I might not do it now that I am not living in the underdark. He would be fine, don’t worry about that. I am not sure why I am talking about this… but I want to work this with you…” She seems frustrated that she couldn’t get the words out she wanted to say. She didn’t know how to talk about this and now Luke was asking questions she didn’t know how to respond to.
“Okay. That’s a relief. My bloodline is infernal. Abyssal rituals could do real lasting harm to a baby with my lineage. It’s just not compatible. We are from two different planes of existence. A baby wouldn’t stand a chance in that clash,” Luke says.
He softens and says, “I know this must be hard for you. I get that. I don’t want to make things harder. I just want the baby to be health and happy. It doesn’t matter if he has horns or not. It’s jusy just really likely he will because I have so much more devil in me than I knew.”
“We’ll work it out. I need to maybe let Rabbit help me dig under this place for more space. A real bedroom and kitchen will be necessary. I need rooms for children and friends and family. I’m just so used to being alone in life that it never occurred to me that would ever change so I live in a tight space,” he says.
Nestrim sits there, silent as a statue. While Izzy nods. “do you think eventually I’d i gave you money for it you could put an extra room in so we could stay at least part time? I would like him near you when you are around.”
Rabbit leans over and kisses Luke on the cheek in what she hopes was a reassuring manner., “I Will bring the Duegar over tomorrow and you can tell them what you need and what you want. That when it will be done by the time we get back.”
Luke smiles at Izzy and says, “You don’t have to pay me. If you want space I’ll work it in. I’d be honored you are considering it.”
He turns to Rabbit, “Yes. Let’s start this. I need the space and while I live Key and enjoy spending time there I also need to organize my life and family.”
Nestrim continues to sit there, quiet as a church mouse, while Izzy wrap her hands around her belly, not in pain but in response to kicking.
Rabbit watches Izzy closely after mentioning she may want to live with Luke. It is hard to tell what she is thinking as she turns to Luke and continues.“I think we can get it all built, and they are already working on a passage from here to the Manor. You ok with all of us living here. If you need me to I could probably stay more at the manor.” it is obvious that is not the choice she wants to make.
“On my god, Rabbit, no! I want you living with me. Woman, do you have no sense of self worth?!” Luke laughs as he says it. “If I am going to get them to excavate, I might as well have them make enough room for everyone. It can meet the tunnel below, and everything will be fine. Nesterim will be able to slip between the two residences, too.”
Nestrim puts his left hand on Luke’s thigh, squeezes affectionately. “Mmmm… I could run over here for lunch. Don’t get me wrong, I am not shy and I don’t care who sees me, but daytime traffic with the crowds makes it hard to get over here in less then half an hour.” He slides his left hand off the thigh and into Luke’s right hand as soon as Luke put down his wine glass.
Izzy is watching the interaction between the three, she cocks her head to the side with a curious look “Are we still going to have sex regularly?”
Rabbit seems to breath a sigh of relief, she didn’t realize how terrified she was of Luke’s answer. She takes a few moments to catch herself before she starts to hyperventilate. She looks over at Nestrim, then to Izzy and finally turns to Luke. She leans up and kisses him softly on the lips. She can’t form the words she wants to say to him. To tell him how much she wants him, needs him, and can’t think without him. Her eyes are large, breath has shifted slightly from a panicked heavy breathing, to breathing for other reasons, mostly thoughts about how she likes his body, and his voice, and his love, but maybe right now his body is the number one thing.
Haltingly she sits back and just watches him. She just sits there trying to think of the words she needs to say. She looks over at Izzy, almost asking for help with her eyes, but when Izzy chuckles and makes a shooshing motion back towards Luke Rabbit turns back and just watches Luke. Waitng…
“It would make things very convenient. I’ll give Keyleth’s idea that. It would be nice to be able to slip back and forth easily. It would shorten your lunches if you didn’t take an hour to come here, spend time with me, and go back,” Luke laughs.
He looks startled at Izzy’s question, “I hadn’t known you’d still want anything to do with me that way. Most women are not interested after I sleep with them and realize I have issues with not being with them. To be honest, I have never found myself in not one relationship, but two. Usually people don’t stick around because I can’t be monogamous. I have issues.”
He looks to Nesterim and Rabbit, “We should talk about everyone’s expectations, and and what we all see happening here. I don’t want to make assumptions. While I can’t promise to keep it in my pants, I can promise to try and work with you both on what you each want. I think it’s fair that I get both of your approvals for more than just one night dalliances so you know I care about each of you. I do recognize you are both elves and will gang up on me eventually.” He smirks as he says the last bit. “It’s in your nature.”
Nestrim squeezes Luke’s hand, looks to Rabbit, then Izzy then back to Luke. “What do you want Luke. You are incredibly giving and try to work with everyone, but you aren’t clear about what you want except to say you have a hard time keeping your dick in your pants. We know that, obviously we accept that. What do you want with a relationship with multiple people? Is it too much, do you want more relationship with one over the other, do you want to add a third or fourth?” He glances over at Izzy then back to Luke.
Izzy shrugs and still looks a little confused “Why would I restrict you from seeing others, especially if you are honest? We aren’t in the Underdark so I don’t expect you to stay monogamous while I fuck around. You are an adult.”
Rabbit shifts back and forth. “You don’t have to ask me for anything my tree. However, I am definitely ok if you come to us for anything more than a single night to get approval. I don’t own you though, so in the end that is for you to decide, not us.”
She continues to watch him and when he mentions about ganging up a smirk crosses her face. She looks over at Nestrim, back up to Luke and just runs both hands, one on each leg, up from his knees to his upper thighs, ending up looking up from his abdomen.
“Define what you mean about ganging up…”
Luke takes a deep breath. Today has been deeply emotional, and he is not sure where to go with this.
“I care very deeply for you and Rabbit,” he says to Nesterim. “I like what we have between us. I am happy to see you are both becoming friends. I hope you will be friendly to each other, but I wouldn’t want to press anything. It’s nice you are both willing to compromise to see me, and I worry I am asking too much there.”
He turns to Izzy, “To be fair to you, I never expected more than a one night stand. I hardly know you. I guess I would ask if you would be patient with me, as I learn more about you and who you are. This is a huge event for my life, your life, and the babies life. I want us to be able at the very least be friends.”
Nestrim squeezes Luke’s hand,again, a smile on his face and his gaze affectionately watching Luke. “I am incredibly happy with what we have, I am even considering what other things you and I might include in this relationship” He glances down at Rabbit who seems unaware then back to Luke. ” I think we are going to be very friendly, at least that is what is told to me by images from the future.” His smile becomes playful as he kisses Luke on the cheek.
Izzy watches, slightly confused but interested. “What do you need me to be patient with you? You want to know about me? Of course I can be patient, and at the very least I would like to be friends.” She continues to rub her belly, obviously slightly in discomfort, but not nearly as pregnant looking as Rabbit was in the painting.
Rabbit realizing that maybe Luke is feeling overwhelmed feels slightly ashamed for a moment for pressuring him. He always avoided responding when he wasn’t sure what to say. She watches Nestrim as he talks, seems to agree with her body movement and then returns her gaze to Luke. She smiles at him lovingly and shifts her weight and lays down with her head on his lap facing outward. Her hair floating around, much longer than it was when they got together as she makes herself comfortable laying there, stretching her legs out over the side of the couch and flailing with her hair making it settle. “I love you.” is all she says.