Cassian sees the fist directed right to his face the second the other Illyrian aims at him, but he doesn’t move, stays still until the last moment, gives his opponent the illusion that he will be the one who will bring the Commander down.
Cassian moves quickly to his left just when the other Illyrian knuckles are just a few inches from his jaw, making his opponent stumble and drop his defense, it’s just for a second, but it’s enough to leave the other Illyrian with no idea of what actually happened.
Cassian closes his hand and then it’s just fist after fist after fist, and he doesn’t stop -he wants to savor the fight, to feel the adrenaline as long as he can- until the other Illyrian is on the ground, his hands raised in defeat. Cassian thinks of giving his opponent his hand, to help him get up, but thinks better of it; that prick is the sixth Illyrian who tried to challenge him since Rixalata begun, the sixth who wanted to see the bastard-born commander with his face in the dirt and the sixth to get his ass kicked.
Rixalata is one of the few Illyrian traditions that Cassian is particularly fond of: it’s a whole day and a whole night of fights where everything is fair if it comes with the blow of a fist-no swords, no killing power, no siphons, no weapons of any kind, just the brutality of fists and kicks and of the breaking of bones.
There’s just one simple rule: no killing; if the opponent raises his hands in defeat, the fight ends.
His blood is singing with triumph, the beating of the drums makes everything seems faster, more vital, and Cassian feels all the energy flowing through him. He looks around, hoping for another challenge, another fight, another stupid prick who thinks he’s better than him, but it’s not a fight he wants.
He wants her.
Nesta is a constant in his mind, the first thing he thought of when he woke and felt that energy, that need in the pit of his stomach and even if she was miles away, her scent filled his lungs and he wanted nothing more than go to her, to take her and take her and take her.
He goes to a well, taking the water from a little bucket and cleans the dirt and blood from his skin.
They talked about it, him and Nesta, of what Rixalata means, of what would happen. She listened, never interrupting as he told her that he would act on instinct alone, even more than usual, that he would pass all day fighting other Illyrians and his voice lowered when he told her that he would pass the night thinking of her, touching himself and pretending it was her hand, moaning her name.
Nesta looked at him, her face turning an endearing shade of red at his words, and he knew she was plotting something in that lovely little head of hers.
She moved toward him slowly, calculating her every move, like she was still making a choice and wasn’t sure of what would happen, of what would his reaction be, until their faces were not even an inch apart, her breath hot on his lips when she whispered, determination seeping through her every word “At night, come home to me.”
He blinked, not quite believing what he was hearing, but she was serious, she wanted him with her, even after he told her what Rixalata was, she didn’t say it was barbaric or low or even stupid, she just said he wanted him with her.
He kissed her, kissed every inch of her skin with everything he had and showed her just how grateful he was.
Again, and again, and again.
And all day, she was the only thought in his mind, his blood screaming to go back to that damned cabin and to his mate, to claim what was his, to make her body sing, her back arch, to make her moan his name because she’s his heart, his soul, she’s his-
With every fight, he tried to focus on the adrenaline in his blood, on his opponent, on the force of the blows, but he couldn’t stop thinking about her, it was as if every beat of his heart pulled him to her.
come home to me
Cassian looks up to the sky, at the sun that is quietly disappearing, leaving space to the moon.
The Illyrians have their orders: there’s no going out of the camp to go and bother the females that are having their own celebration elsewhere, not if they want to see the light of day after Rixalata with their own eyes, and he can trust Azriel for that.
He looks at the moon and opens his wings, feels the wind calling to him, singing to go to her.
And he does.
He flies and flies and the closer he gets to the cabin, the more his need becomes unbearable: he can scent Nesta all over him, feel the phantom of her touch on his skin, her taste in his mouth.
He dives down as fast as he can when he finally sees the cabin.
When his feet hit the ground he stops in his tracks, unable to move and think and breath and do anything but follow her scent.
He opens the door and finds Nesta in the middle of the living room, on her way to him.
Cassian is in front of her in a blink, his hand in her hair while the other pulls her closer to him, his mouth hovering just above hers, but he doesn’t move.
He tries to hold himself back and his whole body trembles, but he wants- he needs her to make the first move, to accept him once again, with his bruises and cuts and his crashing need of her.
Her hands to got his shoulders, pulling him down, and she kisses him, and the brief contact of their lips is enough to make him snap, to take her in his arms and against his chest, to move until she is with her back against the wall, his hands on either side of her face.
He looks in her eyes, that stunning gray gaze that he loves, see how they are now a pool of black.
Cassian smirks, unable to help himself as his hands move to her nightgown, a white, long nightgown that goes all the way to her feet and he takes it off of her, snarling- he doesn’t want anything on her but her skin and his hands and his mouth- leaving her standing in front of him only in her undergarments.
Cassian moves his hand up and down her sides and the touch makes goose bumps rise all over her body, makes her move closer to him, but Cassian shakes his head, moves her until her back is against the wall again.
The first thing he does is take off the little strip of fabric that covers her breasts and he moves his hands to cup them in his palms, moaning at the perfect way they fill his hands.
One of his hands shifts position and Nesta takes a sharp intake of breath as the calluses on his fingertips move on the soft skin of her stomach.
Her hands are gripping his arms hard enough to leave a bruise but that’s a bruise he wants, the mark of her on his skin.
His fingers move in lazy circles on the fabric that covers her sex and she’s already so wet, the dampness of her heat seeps right through his fingers and when Nesta rolls her head back he moves his lips to her throat, kissing, licking, biting while his index finger moves aside her underwear and he has to touch her, to cover every inch of her skin with his, so he moves closer until there’s barely enough space for his hand to move.
“Hello, sweetheart.”, he says, his voice a low, barely understandable growl.
She opens her mouth to answer but only a moan comes out of her beautiful lips as he sinks a finger into her, the sound going straight to his already hard cock, and Cassian delights in the burn of her nails digging into his shoulders.
He’s mesmerized by her, by the expression of her face, the red of her lips, by the way she tries to get her hips closer to him, by the sight of his finger disappearing into her again and again and again.
“Cassian,” her voice, the wanton sound it makes as she calls his name, it drives him out of his mind.
“Cassian, please, please, more.”
He licks a trail all up her neck, adding another finger and pounding into her, going faster and faster until her legs begin to shake, until her moans are so loud they echo in the room.
He knows she’s close, and he wants her to be.
“Come,” he growls, his forehead on hers, his thumb above her lower lip, stroking “Come. I want my fingers to be soaked with you.”
Nesta moans even louder at that, holding his shoulders like a lifeline as she comes, her eyes half-lidded, her chest heaving and she’s so beautiful he might die.
She doesn’t even have the time to come down from her high before he sinks to his knees, his tongue licking the wetness on her inner thighs and she’s still shaking, her hands now in his hair, pulling.
He moves her underwear down her legs, and her smell hits him so strongly, the scent of her arousal, it’s the proof of how much she wants this, wants him.
Cassian moves his face, goes higher and his tongue trails a path right in the middle of her legs and Nesta wails.
He moves his hands to part her still shaking thighs and then one of his hand goes up to cup her breast, to pinch the soft skin on the peak of it.
She yelps and at the same time she moves her hips on his face, she likes it.
Cassian knows he can’t hold himself much longer, he wants to be in her so bad it’s becoming painful, his cock straining against the fabric of his pants, but the way she’s moving, her hips going back and forth, the way she raises herself up to her tiptoes to give him more space, her moans and her fingers in his hair- he wants her to come again, to scream his name so all the world knows she’s his.
His tongue curls around her and the words coming out of her mouth -more, please, Cassian, love you, want you, please- he will give her everything she wants, and more.
He looks up to her, to the blush spreading on her beautiful breasts, at the blissful expression on her face and she’s looking down on him, her breath stopping in her throat for a moment when their eyes meet.
His hand moves away from her breast and she makes a little sound of protest but he slowly moves it down her stomach and the anticipation in her eyes, the sheer want she feels, it reflects his own.
He dips his fingers inside her again, but now his motions are slow, achingly so, and Nesta starts to move as much as she can, as much as the little space between him and the wall allows her, trying to get him deeper, rocking her hips back and forth, but he doesn’t change the rhythm, his tongue focused on the spot on the apex of her sex, moving slowly, letting her pleasure build up and up until she can’t stand it, until she begs him to go faster.
And so he does.
Cassian moves his hand to her hips, keeping her against the wall as her legs start to shake so bad that she can’t keep herself upright, but he doesn’t stop his tongue from moving, drinking her in.
Nesta’s breath starts to come in quick, labored pants as her orgasm hits her, her face flushed a beautiful shade of red, her eyes wide.
He goes up to her then, cups her face in his hands and kisses her, making Nesta taste herself on his tongue.
“Mine, you’re mine, you’re mine”, he says and Nesta, still shaking, her naked body covered in sweat, with her voice hoarse from moaning whispers “Prove it.”
It takes a second and then she’s in his arms again as he moves toward the table, moves one arm to throw everything on it on the ground, not caring of the sound of glass shattering, nothing matters but them.
He places Nesta above the table, her golden brown hair like a halo around her head.
Cassian moves away just to remove his pants, and seeing her, splayed in front of him it’s-it’s too much, his blood screaming inside of him, every last shred of his self-control disappearing.
He slides is cock inside her and watches as Nesta arches her back.
He bends on her, licking up her breasts, her hands in his hair again, but it’s just a moment, then his hands are on her hips as he thrust into her and she’s so perfect, so perfect, tight and wet and hot, the smack of their bodies meeting vibrates through his bones.
He moves one of his hands and puts it under her navel, spreading his fingers and pushing down “Can you feel it? Can you feel me inside you, how we fit perfectly?” he’s beyond coherent thought now, the words coming out of his mouth like a flow.
She nods her head frantically, a gospel of “yes, yes, yes”.
“And you know why? Because you are my mate, and You. Are. Mine” he punctuates every word with a deep, powerful thrust.
Cassian moves his hand, makes it travel gently on her throat, stops on her mouth and she parts her lips, takes two of his fingers in her mouth and sucks.
“Fuck”, he says as her tongue swirls and he can feel the vibrations of her moans on his fingers and Mother, he wants her mouth, wants it wrapped tightly around his cock, he wants everything of her.
Her legs move around his hips, her feet on the small of his back, urging him on and he growls, buries himself even deeper into her; he removes his fingers from her mouth to kiss her, a kiss that is wild and consuming, burning.
He moves to Nesta’s neck again, biting down just as her nails scratch at his shoulders -ten red lines on his body, the signs of the female he belongs to-, both of them trying to mark the other.
His hand travels between her legs again and he knows she must so, so sensitive right now and when he start to touch her with the same fingers that were in her mouth moments ago she nearly screams, her moaning so loud it makes him move quicker, his hips snapping against hers, the slick sound of skin on skin.
He feels her tighten around him so he strokes her even harder, moves his hips faster until all that she can do is feel him and moan and scream-yours, yours, please, faster, Cassian, Cassian- and when she comes he knows he won’t be able to hold back much longer so he takes her hips in his hands and it takes a handful of thrust for him to go over the edge, his face hidden in the crook of her neck.
He moves to kiss her, both of them trying to breathe normally as the pleasure weighs down and the first rays of sunshine come in through the window, playing with the gold on Nesta’s hair.
The kiss is gentle, slow and sweet and he slowly moves out of her to cradle her in his arms as gently as he can, even if they are both still shaking, their breathing still nowhere near normal.
“How about a bath now, sweetheart?” he asks and she nods, already half asleep and it’s obvious from the way she leans into him, from the way her legs still tremble that the bath will have to wait, so he goes to the bedroom, moving the covers as best as he can without putting her down.
When she’s under the covers he moves in too, taking her in his arms, kissing her forehead, her hair, telling her how much he loves her, ho wonderful she is, the best thing to ever happen to him.
She mumbles her agreement and Cassian can’t help but laugh.
Nesta moves closer, snuggles against his chest and says, her voice thick with sleep “Next year, you are passing this celebration of yours with me, day and night”, and even if she is fighting to keep her eyes open, and he can’t help but feel like the luckiest bastard on heart to be able to make her like this, to make her feel so good and come so hard that she can barely speak, Nesta still somehow manages to make it sound like an order.
She nods to herself a bit, her nose moving on his chest, and then falls asleep.
Cassian looks at her, at the peaceful expression on her face, at her hands on his chest and he knows that he will never, never love anything as he loves her.
He opens his wing, moves it until it covers her, shields her, protects her.
His eyes stay on his mate until he can’t keep them open any longer, so he kisses her, one last time, and falls asleep.