BY : WonderMint
Category: Final Fantasy XIV > Yaoi - Male/Male
Dragon prints: 1739
Disclaimer: Final Fantasy FFXIV: ARR is owned by Square Enix and based on the creation of Hironobu Sakaguchi. May they ever walk in the light of the crystal. I own no right to the characters and settings herein and seek no profit therefrom.

A/N: As always, if there's something you liked or tips you'd like to give, I'd love to hear your feedback.  This chapter is dedicated to Yuna, who gave me courage to finish it.

And now for the sexy parts.  *throws papers on the ground and runs like hell*


Without thinking Alphinaud was on his knees, ripping off his hood to see better in the dim light filtering into the cavern. Ser Aymeric was huddled under his cloak, still as the snows. He brushed the thick wet fabric aside to reveal his face, eyes closed and skin ashen. Hands dashed to his throat, feeling for warmth, a pulse. In response the man drew a ragged, trembling breath.

Alphinaud nearly threw himself down upon him in relief. Instead, he reached unsteady hands to his grimoire, finding the simple curative spell that he feared would do little good. It took a full minute for him to clear his head enough to cast, but when he placed his hand back on the pale throat, the knight's breathing had eased. Moments later, dark lashes fluttered open, greeting him with unfocused eyes.

“An angel has been sent for me,” the prone knight breathed quietly. “I thought for certain I had failed.” Aymeric's eyes drifted closed again, an expression on his face bordering on the beatific.

The panic that had been raging through Alphinaud's body suddenly peaked, and he lurched forward to grip the other man's arms and shake him. “You are not going to die, you wine-sotted fool! Aymeric, look at me!”

Pale blue eyes opened again, more focused this time. “Truly, 'tis you? Alphinaud...” a searching hand gripped his wrist, weak and barely warm. “Glad. Stay with me.” His eyes closed yet again, and he relaxed his grip.

Panic eased only a little, Alphinaud wracked his mind for a way to keep the both of them alive until the storm passed. The cave was shelter, but its stone walls would steal their warmth straight away. He looked behind him to the chocobo, which had eased itself to the floor and was huddling miserably in a ball. A bag lay behind his saddle, and he unpacked it to find the extent of their survival kit: a few logs of oiled wood wrapped in two thin blankets, a flint and steel, some bars of compressed grain, and a canteen of water.

The fire came first. The wood ignited easily, though it burned slowly and gave little warmth. It was better than nothing.

The real problem now was their clothing. By now the chill air hardly bothered him; enough ice and snow had melted into his tunic to chatter his teeth. Alphinaud quickly stripped to his smallclothes, feeling oddly relieved to be naked and dry. He could now feel the faint glow of the fire chasing away some of the chill of the air.

Of course, Aymeric would be in much the same condition, with the added irritation of the conductive metal. He rolled him gently onto his back, and began to search for the clasps that held together his heavy armor. The knight's eyes opened again, black curls framing his face in dancing shadows. His ghostly-pale cheeks reddened slightly as clear eyes took all of his rescuer in. “Alphinaud, what...”

“I'm not going to let you freeze to death, no matter how much you seem to want to,” the youth replied testily. Giving up on the breastplate, he reached for the boots, which he at least had experience with. The metal was like ice in his hands, and they fought him mightily, the lining having expanded with moisture. He tossed them away and huffed with effort, glaring upward at the other man from between his legs. Aymeric groaned with resignation then, and weakly reached to unclasp his armor. Together they worked the majority of it free, Alphinaud helping him to sit up and lift the embroidered tabard over his head, then slipping one of the blankets beneath him as he eased back down.

It proved to be an excellent way to check for injuries, as well. Much to his relief his limbs were whole and sound, if sore, no dragon-claws marring his pale chest. What worried him, though, were the flakes of black blood clotting in his hair. He had evidently struck his head at some point, which may have contributed to the knight's disorientation and sleepiness. Of course, hypothermia could do that too.

What he failed to notice, in his haste and worry, was how close they were. Not until he sat between his knees, his fingers already working at the man's belt. Hands closed around his wrists to stop him. He looked up to see Aymeric staring at him imploringly. “Please, you mustn't.”

He was suddenly aware of the dryness of his throat. Part of him wanted to rage and call him a fool, but his own nervousness stopped him. “I won't as long as you will,” he answered, backing away. He tossed the other blanket over to him and took to arranging the clothing to dry by the fire, kneeling on the frigid floor and counting the seconds until he could no longer hear the rustle of fabric. Finally it stopped, and he looked back see Aymeric reclining sheepishly beneath the other blanket, the heavy trousers having been tossed to join the heap.

“That wasn't so difficult, was it?” He crawled to the other side of the blanket, facing the wall, giving his companion the space closer to the fire. Aymeric looked stricken but was mercifully silent as he slipped beneath, cautiously draping an arm over the broad chest. His skin was no longer clammy, but it was still cool to the touch. He scooted close, pressing his body against his companion's side. The knight surprised him then, lifting his arm to wrap around his back, pressing them together and making him slightly dizzy. For the first time in over a bell, he allowed himself to relax, laying his heavy head on the other man's shoulder, feeling the cold slowly dissipate and the skin against him begin to warm.

It was so tempting to fall asleep like that.

“We have to stay awake,” he mumbled miserably after a few moments. “You've got hypothermia, a concussion, or both.” He felt a rumble deep in the other man's chest, a murmur of disapproval.

“I'll stay awake. You sleep,” offered Aymeric.

“You can't be serious. You'll fall asleep straight away.”

A deep sigh reverberated below him. “Yes, that was the plan. It was worth a try.”

“Talk to me.” Alphinaud's anxiety surfaced again, pressing words from his mouth. “What were you trying to tell me last night? You didn't do this deliberately—”

“No, no, no!” A savage growl sounded, cutting him off, somehow frightening and reassuring at the same time. After a moment, he felt the other man lift his hand to clasp the one draped across his chest. The unexpected intimacy of the gesture took Alphinaud's breath away. He had tried to ignore the compromising nature of their position, but now the hands wrapped about him seemed to embrace him as a lover. A strange dissonance possessed him, as if he had entered into a dreamworld.

“This is not how I expected it to happen,” the knight began. “But the Fury's ways are beyond my understanding. Perhaps I have been saved. Perhaps not. It remains to be seen.” Aymeric's voice trailed into a low rumble, and Alphinaud closed his eyes despite himself, relaxing into the vibrations of his chest.

The knight paused for a moment. Then he nearly whispered. “It seems I have been tested. She has cast me into the abyss, to winnow the unworthy like wheat before the fire.”

Alphinaud opened his eyes in mild alarm. He looked up at the older man's face, which was cast in a veil of sorrow. “I had hoped you over your delirium. Regardless, you have passed the test. I saw no wings on your back, though I would have preferred you had used them.”

The other man smiled ruefully into the dark ceiling. “You think my heart pure, then?”

“As pure as any has ever been,” he answered quietly. He was surprised, then, when the hand clutching his own slowly traced up his arm, then moved to cup his jaw. He shivered, feeling slightly lost and confused at the pleasure that pooled in his stomach in reply, but made no motion to stop him.

The arm that held him close shifted then, as Aymeric lifted himself onto an elbow and brought their faces close. Looking straight into his eyes, he murmured his answer almost against Alphinaud's upturned lips. “You could not be more wrong.”

There was only a moment's more hesitation, then Aymeric struck. Pulling him close he captured the younger man's lips. He pressed cautiously at first, then moved them more firmly as Alphinaud slid his eyes shut and melted in his arms. The sensation was delicious, a kind of shock-wave that moved through him, filling him with heat and something else, something dark and wanting. He clutched at the other man's shoulder, pressing close, still shy about the skin-to-skin contact but wanting more.

He should have been surprised, he vaguely felt, but gears were turning in the back of his mind, informing him that yes, this was exactly what he should have expected. What did come as a shock was how much he wanted it. When he had been younger, less ambitious, he had flirted briefly with the affections of women. Those awkward kisses and gropes were nothing like this. Within moments he was gasping breathlessly into the other man's mouth, prompting a sharp tongue to steal in and trace his own. Fingers embedded themselves in his hair, then pulled teasingly at his braid. Behind heavy lids, his eyes rolled backwards as the kiss was deepened, making him moan and whimper.

“Oh, gods, Alphinaud,” the other man moaned against his mouth in reply. He was panting now, they both were. It wasn't enough, and when the other man attempted to disengage to catch his breath, Alphinaud pushed forward and straddled his waist, pressing him into the blanket. He was suddenly aware of a pressure in his hip-hugging shorts, but there was no time to sort out the sensations as their lips clashed again, his own tongue slipping into the other man's wanting mouth. Aymeric's hands were alive, tracing the length of his ear with narrow fingers, stroking his bare back and gripping his shoulders with urgency.

Gasping for air, Alphinaud ceased his assault on the other man's lips, suddenly desperate to taste skin. Tongue traced to the nape of his neck, where earlier he had frantically sought a pulse. He licked possessively at the spot, nearly purring at the strong beat of his heart, before nipping with his teeth. In response he felt a sharp buck of the hips, another guttural moan sounding in his ear.

“Fury preserve, this cannot be happening,” Aymeric muttered. “You must be a devil in disguise.” The thought amused him briefly, but the man unexpectedly gripped his shoulders and pushed him away to look into his eyes. “No, this is wrong,” he breathed, apparently struggling to focus. “You cannot—do you truly want this?” His gaze was filled with concern and vulnerability rather than lust, and it made him pause.

Sluggishly his mind attempted to catch up, looking for the light of reason and finding none. There was no way in hells he wanted to stop. Just the small sounds the knight had made were enough to drive away his sanity. Alphinaud looked down to the firm chest below him, moving with quickened breath. The rational portions of his mind warred back and forth, but distracted by the thrumming of pleasure in his blood, he could find no answer. At length, he gave the only reply that he was sure of.

“If my lips be your salvation, then I will damn myself if necessary. You think yourself the knave? Then for awhile, I shall be your willing accomplice.” His cheeks burned at the truth of the confession. It was only half an answer, but it would have to do. He could commit to no more.

The knight blinked at him uncomprehendingly, want and fear in equal measure reflecting in widened eyes. “You have warmed me quite enough for a lifetime; do not do anything you will regret.”

“Regret would be impossible. Pray, do not deny me this,” Alphinaud finished in a whisper. His hands slid up the length of Aymeric's forearms, stroking his wrists until they relaxed their grip on his shoulders. He gently pushed at them until strong arms were folded against the ground, offering no objection, before lowering himself against the other man's bare chest. He had only a moment to register the increased heat before the knight bucked against him, head thrown back in resistance or pleasure, revealing the pale skin of his throat.

Alphinaud released a rough, ragged gasp. Pressed against the other man's body as he was, he realized the true import of the movement. His own groin was now brought in contact with the other man's toned stomach, and when he moved he felt every ilm of skin through the thin cotton of his shorts, teasing his erection to further hardness and sending a tingling sensation to the tips of his toes. The friction between them was delicious, hot, with the barest sheen of sweat beginning to form. Aymeric pressed against him once again, slowly, deliberately rubbing against him, and despite the lewdness of the action he could not contain his pleasure. He closed his eyes, lost in the feeling, unable to contain a low moan that failed to respect his embarrassment.

A possessive growl followed, the hands he held suddenly twisting free. Aymeric's sharp eyes were on him now, all hesitation having fled, replaced with something like intent. One hand rested on his upper back, stroking with unexpected gentleness, while the other one traced his side. Slowly it drifted downward, thumb moving inward along his stomach until it reached his hip, perching above the waistband of his smallclothes. He paused there, tracing the hollow along the ridge of his pelvis with gentle motions, and meeting his eyes with calm purpose.

Alphinaud panicked for a bare moment before realizing that he was waiting for approval. He gripped the offending wrist and dragged it away just a fraction, moving it instead to caress his back. Aymeric nodded understanding, narrowing his eyes as if imagining what could have been. “Your move, then,” he purred, flexing his hips lightly to rub against the younger man's groin, a gentler touch this time. It still set his nerves on fire. Sure hands stroked his back, waiting patiently for him to consider.

He hadn't really been thinking about anything after all. He had no plan, not now, not when he had charged over the stone walls and over the brink of the Witchdrop. He would just have to continue making it up as he went. Somehow, knowing that Aymeric respected any limits he set gave him renewed courage.

He closed his eyes then, and decided to throw caution and propriety to the wind. He lowered his lips to the man's clavicle and kissed a tender line along the length of his shoulder, steadying his nerves while he planted his palms firmly on the thin blanket below. He was startled at the contrast to the heat and sweat between them as bitter cold bit through the fabric.

Then he pushed himself backwards. The hands at his back clutched him, almost frantically gripping his side as he slid backwards the space of several aching ilms until he made contact with the heat he knew full well he would find there. The knight's reaction was instantaneous, a strangled bark of surprise as he held Alphinaud close, pressing their bodies together and trapping their erections in the hot space between them. When he opened his eyes, he found that Aymeric had pressed his shoulders back against the floor, where he still panted heavily, lost to the world.

It was almost more than he could bear. The sudden closeness triggered a dizzying frisson, dancing through his scalp and the back of his neck, down his spine, bleeding into the fingers that clutched his back. In retrospect, this may have been farther than he'd initially intended to take their encounter. It was hard to argue the point, though, his blood practically humming with electricity and desire. He was intensely aware of the hard body trapped between his legs. He could understand now why Aymeric had wanted to touch him, the selfsame urge overtaking him all at once, wanting suddenly only to hear the other man sigh with pleasure.

Aside from his heavy breaths, Aymeric held absolutely still. After a moment, he lifted his head enough to look downward at the young man atop him. He seemed to be experiencing some heretofore unknown level of astonishment.

Alphinaud decided that he liked to see him off-balance.

All at once, it became imperative he press the advantage. With one knee he pressed searchingly between the other man's thighs, prompting him to widen them to make room. It was then a quick matter to shimmy backwards into the space, out of the searching grasp, and disappear beneath the blanket.

His seclusion didn't last long. Aymeric made a grunt of alarm, almost a squeak but lower in pitch. He threw the blanket forward over Alphinaud's shoulders, revealing his own long torso to the chill air.

“What—?” was all he could make out before Alphinaud's hands were on him, boldly grasping his erection through the thick cotton undergarment. The prone man threw his head back and groaned, baring his teeth as if in defiance of the unexpected pleasure. He could feel him tremble beneath his hand, as though he struggled not to move, to press against him and draw yet more.

“You're going to let all the heat out that way, you know.” Alphinaud's voice was calm and steady, betraying nothing of his nervous butterflies. It could have been his normal speaking voice had it not been for the sultry edge he swore he hadn't put there. There was no tremor in his hands, though his cheeks pinked noticeably in the soft light.

Carefully he drew his palm downward, tracing the shaft with the sensitive hollow of his palm. Aymeric returned a deep, willowy groan that seemed to last forever, pressing into his hand with even pressure. “Not fair,” he managed to say at last. He struggled feebly onto his elbows, eyes glued on the hand stroking him, lips parted carelessly. His eyes were dark with desire, lids heavy as if inhabiting a dream.

He was struck by an intense desire to kiss him then, but resolutely he ignored the urge. He had different prey in mind, and he somehow doubted the knight would allow him to move so far from his reach again if he returned to his arms. “Sorry,” he said, not bothering to pretend to be sincere. “I could stop if you want.” He twisted his wrist, grinding abruptly against the man below him, making him writhe and giving the lie to the threat. No response was forthcoming, save a gurgling sort of noise that could have been intended as words before they reached Aymeric's trachea and died in vain.

Oh yes, he did want this. It was perfectly mad and perfectly obscene and he wanted more.

Alphinaud released him, then, winding his hands around the fabric at the side of the knight's hips. One-by-one his fingertips ventured beneath, ever watching his companion's reaction. He moved slowly now, not for lack of want but merely to afford Aymeric the opportunity to object, though all signs suggested that he would not. The space between them felt as if it could combust at any moment, ignited by the wanton abandon the beautiful man before him displayed. Shoulders tensing and flexing in agitation, lifting his head to watch and panting through his mouth. He tipped his head back just slightly as if overwhelmed and needing distance. The pale skin of his neck lay exposed but out of his reach, emphasizing his vulnerability and thrilling Alphinaud in ways he didn't quite understand.

No objection forthcoming, he swallowed his remaining nervousness and slid the garment over toned hips, sliding his hands downward to caress his arse reverently. Aymeric lifted his hips to allow the material to pass, face and chest flushed red but panting wetly with need. With a hiss and a sharp intake of breath, the swollen erection sprang free, redder than the blush on his cheeks and glistening at the circumcised tip.

Alphinaud had anticipated leaning backwards and liberating the man completely of his final piece of clothing, but it became quite clear that he would be too distracted for such a complex task. Everything fled his mind at once, leaving him only with the reality before him. He abandoned the white fabric pooled below the sensual curve of the man's rear, tracing his palms around muscular legs that bent and flexed to grip his sides, steadying them both. He drew one finger forward, cautiously stroking up the length of the prominent cock. It twitched suddenly, causing him to catch it in the palm of his hand, drawing a high-pitched moan from the man below him. He whimpered pleadingly as Alphinaud grasped him, taking in the contrast of the silken skin to the searing heat and hardness that must have been almost painful. Was painful, if the sounds Aymeric made were any indication. He unconsciously keened with want, no longer understanding why he had rejected the hands that sought to stroke him.

It was all too much, and it was not nearly enough. No thoughts interfered as he dropped his head and darted out his tongue, tasting the glittering fluid oozing from the tip and taking in the scent of sweat and arousal. It was viscous and lightly salty, slick and inviting him to things he could not even name.

He would not resist. Tongue flat and wet with both their fluids, he licked upwards over the head, catching the cock between his lips and sucking experimentally while he steadied it with his hand. Immediately Aymeric's whole body convulsed, thrusting minutely into his mouth and hands despite what must have been a monumental effort of self-governance. Alphinaud relaxed his jaw, allowing himself to sink slowly downward as he lapped at the vertical ridge traveling the length of the shaft.

“Oh Fury,” Aymeric moaned, voice no longer restrained but painted with passion. “Oh! Oh fuck, yes, gods be praised.” Obscenities mixed with breathy prayers tumbled from his lips, trailing into an incoherent jumble of deep, needy sounds. The blasphemy was glorious, an exquisite shattering of inhibition, reminding Alphinaud of the depth of his transgressions.

He had closed his eyes at some point to focus on the sensations, surreal and new and wholly unexpected. He was startled when a hand roughly wound itself into his hair, calloused thumb brushing along his ear. He felt suddenly anchored. The grip was strong but measured, making no effort to hurry or force him. The knight's legs flexed around his sides, and he had the sudden, unbidden epiphany that Aymeric was making love to him.

A cascade of emotion tumbled through him, catching at his throat and making him hum brokenly around the man's cock. He let them wash through him and away, focusing manically on the task before him. When it was buried as deep as he felt comfortable, he pulled back up at a fractionally quicker pace, bringing his hand up with it and taking advantage of the saliva-slick surface. Harsh, high-pitched gasps entreated him to hurry. He swirled his tongue around the head when he reached it again, making the man tremble. Tremble for him. Pleasure was building in his own body, unattended and unasked for.

He turned his head a fraction and plunged downward suddenly, twisting his hand in a practiced motion. Hips jerked upward again to meet him, but his steadying hand on the knight's thigh kept him securely anchored. He drew away slowly again, movements becoming less torturous as his patience thinned. He was torn between wanting to draw the experience out as long as he could, and wishing to end it now, tearing screams from the other man's throat. Gradually he increased the pace, breathing evenly through his nose when he could, reveling in the fingers that alternately stroked and seized his hair.

Aymeric was not making patience an easy thing. He would have guessed that he would be a quiet lover, but he seemed to moan or gasp greedily at every movement he made. It was enough to drive him mad. He drew backwards on the next upstroke, lips leaving him completely but teasing the swollen tip with his tongue in the cool air. His eyes traveled the length of the other man's body as he caught his breath, only to have it leave him altogether. Aymeric had leaned forward farther than looked strictly comfortable, propped up by one arm trailing behind, the other stretched forward to caress him. Every muscle in his torso seemed tense and lightly coated with sweat. In contrast his head hung forward limply, mouth open and panting obscenely. Aristocratic brows knitted together in concentration and eyes closed serenely beneath dark curls that stuck to his skin. The sight of the noble knight so thoroughly undone went straight to his cock, causing him to suck in a sudden breath of chill air and making him wonder if there was anything he could truly deny him.

There wasn't. The knight's narrow eyes opened suddenly, fixing him with a stare of raw lust and something powerful, dominating. Quickly he bared his teeth and growled, a short angry rumble, quietly enough that he might not have heard if the cave had not been so silent and still.

Alphinaud felt his patience shatter. The urge to return the challenge was quickly overridden by lust and the desire to posses the man, make him his own. Immediately his mouth was on him again, licking and sucking with abandon and taking him as deep as he could. The restraining hand on the man's hip loosened, pulled instead, encouraging Aymeric to make rough, shallow thrusts into his mouth and hand. All sense left him and for several glorious minutes they lost themselves completely to pleasure, writhing and moaning against each other until they could take no more.

Then Aymeric shouted, a ragged bark broken in half like a branch in a storm. The knight was convulsing, spasming beneath his hands before he felt the hot, thick fluid at the back of his throat. He swallowed hurriedly, holding him as he twitched, startled and enraptured by the eroticism of the moment. Finally a deep moan echoed through the knight, sending another series of sparks down Alphinaud's neck and spine, and he answered with one of his own, no longer master of his own body. The hand in his hair twitched, loosening rather than pulling as he'd expected, and instead moved to stroke firmly along the length of his ear, making his whole head tingle. A blinding sort of shock overtook him then, unexpected and not quite welcome but sweet as candy all the same.

It was some moments before he could find significance in anything at all. He laid his head down upon the smooth expanse of the knight's stomach, loving the whisper of the long fingers that gently played along his scalp. His heart gradually slowed, relaxed. At length he looked up to see the gentle expression on Aymeric's face, simultaneously overwhelmed and full of affection. With effort he pushed himself into movement, climbing the short distance to lay bonelessly in the taller man's embrace.

They lay for a time in silence, the knight drawing the blanket back around their shoulders and holding him securely. Aymeric seized him in a lingering kiss, unashamedly tasting every corner of his mouth, lazy, languid, tender.

“Would you like me to return the favour?” the other man asked at length, nuzzling his neck with his nose and lips and stroking his side with small, soothing motions.

“No, that won't be necessary.” Alphinaud blushed with the admission. He was glad that the boundary he'd set earlier was still in place, given the uncomfortable stickiness of his shorts. He was not accustomed to feeling embarrassment, but it was becoming disturbingly common in Aymeric's presence.

The response was a low moan of approval mixed with disappointment, a beautiful, agonizing sound. “More's the pity.” The breathy voice in his ear spoke volumes, making it clear that it was a standing offer should he change his mind. His cooling blood raced momentarily, before he could quell the temptation. But Alphinaud remained silent, wishing then only that he could sleep for an entire turn of the sun in the comfort of Aymeric's arms. He could afford to relax for a few minutes at least. They were in no danger of freezing to death, not now and not ever.

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