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Whispering Death ch. 2

Drina repeated the name in her thoughts. Hestar, what a beautiful name. They silently stared at one another while Hestar leaned closer. Her lips were full and lush, begging Drina to taste them. All she could hear was the pounding of her heartbeat and the soft stir of Ocian beside her. Ocian!

With a gasp, Drina turned from Hestar to check if she was still asleep. Thankfully, Ocian readjusted and continued her peaceful slumber. Drina let her breath out in a slow, steady stream. It wasn’t a secret to Ocian that she liked women. She feared more about the impact her energy would have on her than being caught. Kissing Hestar might push the limit and break the bottle of energy she had suppressed. Ocian was a reminder to control herself.

Hestar dropped her head with a quiet laugh. Embarrassed, Drina dropped her head against the wall. With a small hum, Hestar propped herself on the ledge and crossed her arms under her chest. It took everything in Drina not to ogle the presented cleavage exposed for her pleasure. Even with Ocian beside her, Hestar wasn’t about to give up. Instead, she leaned close to her ear.

“There’s a common room on the other side of the hostel. Want to accompany me there? It will be mostly empty, and no one will interrupt us.”

This offer was too tempting. Drina knew the moment they were alone that there wouldn’t be an exchange of words. She didn’t need foresight to predict that outcome. Rolling the idea around, she debated the choices; if she left to the common room, there was no protecting Ocian but staying here would wake her. Either option would wreak havoc on her control.

Biting at her bottom lip, Drina looked at the empty bunk across hers. Maybe they could still spend more time together without leaving. No one was sleeping there anyways, and Drina wouldn’t be either after this exchange.

The image of Cygnus floated in the back of her mind. There was no such thing as coincidence, and all the signs were there. Something about this woman compelled Drina. One look at Hestar’s charming smile lured her in. The temptress lowered her eyes to Drina’s lips and lingered there, waiting for a reply. Oh, Hells, Drina thought.

“How about the bottom bunk, and we see from there?”

With a cheerful bounce, Hestar grinned triumphantly and hopped down from the ledge. Drina carefully moved Ocian from her side to slip away, then carefully climbed to the floor. Without the comfort of the bunks ledges, there was nothing to bar distance between them. It made Drina anxious. What next? She had no experience since she always kept her distance from any stranger. There was no luxury of falling in love while on the run.

Hestar was a few inches from her and didn’t take long to act. She took Drina’s hand in hers and gently pulled her to the other bunk. Sitting down, Drina glanced at her bunk to reassure herself. If Ocian woke, she wasn’t far.

With a hard swallow, Drina gave Hestar her full attention. What do they do now? Should they continue where they left off or talk? It was painfully obvious how awful she was at socializing, never mind flirting or hooking up with someone. What could she talk about that wouldn’t give her origins away? Fidgeting with her fan, it dawned on her that she was still holding it. Maybe she could show off a little bit to ease her nervousness.

“Would you... Care to have your fortune read?”

Hestar blinked, her expression with genuine surprise. “You mean like palm readings and tarot cards?”

With a smirk, Drina took Hestar’s hand in hers to guide a finger across the slips of the fan. Starting from the end, she dragged her finger along the folds of the accordion.

“Stop your finger on the slip that feels right. If you don’t feel it the first time, try again until you do. The first opening is your past. second, your present, and third’s your future.”

Hestar giggled, raising a skeptic eyebrow. Drina knew what she was thinking, it was always the same reaction. How can you read a fortune from a fan? Not everyone had her ability, nor did they have a magical fan. It was always a light reading, though. It never ended well with an entirely accurate deep reading, plus it wouldn’t be as romantic.

Each time Hestar stopped on a fold, Drina gracefully popped it out quickly with a flick. After years of practice and memorization, she already knew more about Hestar than she may have known about herself. Drina let go of her hand and turned to show the first panel. Hestar inched in close to remove the space between them.

“I wish it were your folds I could run my fingers through.”

The comment made Drina blush brightly. It was more abrasive than she was ready for, and she needed a moment to gather her thoughts. She cleared her throat before she spoke.

“This sign here means you were hurt in your past. Your family was met with abandonment.”

Hestar shielded herself, breathing before running her fingers down Drina’s leg. The teasing sent shivers through Drina’s body. She assumed it was a way to brush off a serious topic quickly.

“My dad left us when I was younger. Left a void in my life.”

Drina already knew. She saw images of the devastating impact on Hestar’s family, and later, her mother passed from heartbreak. Hestar was the youngest of four siblings and had to fend for herself. With a heavy heart, Drina spoke softly.

“I’m sorry. My parents also... well, let's say my sister is all I have left.”

Moving quickly to the next image, Drina scoffed with a smile. The constellation had already visited her earlier as Cygnus plagued Drina again tonight.

“The good news is at least you will find someone you will fall in love with.”

She closed the first panel and showed the swan with a flourish. Hestar chuckled, pressing her body against Drina to closely examine the swan.

“Oh? Tell me more. Is she a beautiful woman with dark hazel eyes?”

Drina feigned a shocked gasp. “She? Oh no, it says here: an elderly man in the hostel. I think I saw a balding man who fits the description perfectly.”

Hestar belted out a laugh, burying her head into Drina’s shoulder. Drina shhed her, using the moment to wrap her arm around. Her hand brushed against Hestar’s soft, lush skin to pull her close. Drina took in the smell of her sandalwood scent. They giggled a bit longer before Hestar reached for the fan and gently removed it from her hand. She shifted to straddle Drina, placing the fan beside them on the pillow.

“So what does it say about the one I fall in love with then?” Hestar’s eyes twinkled with mischief, reaching to touch the side of Drina’s face. Her fingers traced slowly down her cheek towards her neck. Fighting hard to remember the message, Drina debated how to explain it.

“That you will care for them deeply and that it will bring change to your life.”

As much as the fortune felt right, it was hard to believe it was true. Drina and Ocian would continue further south before heading to the eastern sea. How could a romance this strong exist for them both when she would be gone in a few days? Hestar seemed to also doubt her fortune.

“Seems like quite an impact considering you may only stay a short while.”

Drina gulped, daring to place her hands on Hestar’s thighs. She was at her limit, and her voice cracked while she spoke.

“W-what about you? Are you only here for a few days too? Because you are also staying here in the hostel?”

Between Hestar’s warmth and Drina’s racing heart, she hardly noticed the chill around them. This was the closest contact she’d ever had with a woman, and all control was slipping. Faint ghostly outlines floated behind Hestar, which Drina chose to ignore. So much for keeping her emotions in check. Every fiber of her being wanted to kiss her.

Hestar smirked devilishly, almost reading her mind. She grabbed Drina’s hand and slid it towards her bountiful bottom. Sliding her hand into Drina’s hair, she pulled her face close.

“I live here. Beats paying rent, and I get to meet all sorts of people. Although, none of them have been as stunning as you.”

Was this a line Hestar used for all the girls? Even if she did, it worked wonders on Drina. Unable to resist any further, Drina kissed her.

A fire within set blaze, unlocking emotions she’d not allowed in years. Drina let out a small moan, a mistake on her part. Hestar took it as a signal to ramp the heat up more and pressed her body hard into Drina’s, grinding her hip against her. Sliding her hands under Hestar’s clothes, Drina ran her hand up the small of her back. The heat from her body gave Drina life, a feeling she wasn’t accustomed to.

The ghostly wails around them alerted Drina while they continued kissing passionately. Opening an eye to peek, she could see the spirits surrounding them in a light fog. If she didn’t stop soon, they would take shape of their former selves. The feeling of Hestar’s tongue slipping into her mouth dissolved any thoughts she had. Rolling her eyes back into her head, and all resistance melted away. The only option was to give in. This time, Hestar moaned when Drina followed suit. Hestar dug her fingers into her back and gave her hair a harder tug to deepen the kiss. Drina let out a low rumbling growl from the pain. It was exquisite. Passion and lust devoured her.

The room was loud, and Drina knew the ghosts would be completely visible by now. There were screams and cries begging for her attention. Instead, Drina rolled Hestar under her onto the bed. Her hand was needy, sliding across Hestar’s stomach. One of Hestar’s hands found its way past Drina’s wraps up her back, digging into her skin while the other held her face. The voices were almost deafening when Drina’s hand almost reached Hestar’s supple breast. Over all the noise, one voice cut through crystal clear through all the clammer around her. The spell Hestar had over her shattered in an instant.

Lana… where are you? Lana?”

Drina froze. It was in her mother tongue. Ocian was having her nightmare again because of the onslaught of Drina’s power. The meek voice even startled Hestar to break apart. Her eyes were wide, unable to make out the words.

Without hesitation, Drina jumped off Hestar to hop up to the ledge. She reached over to stroke Ocian’s head and replied in their dialect.

Jeta, I am right here. It’s alright.” Switching back to the common tongue, she continued. “It’s alright. We’re in a hostel. It’s just a dream; we’re safe.”

Straining to pull her power in, Drina suppressed it with all she could muster. Ocian turned towards her, opening her teary eyes.

“I thought you were gone.”

Drina smiled weakly. “I hadn't gone far. I’m always close by.”

Ocian nodded sleepily, closing her eyes while Drina soothed her.

Your hands are warm for once. It’s nice.”

The voices were mere wisps through the wind when Ocian slipped back into slumber. The light breathing of her sister was all that could be heard. Drina let out a long sigh, watching her sister a little longer. Stepping to the floor, Drina held the ledge and smacked her head on the wood. With a second thud, she pressed it there while chitting herself. She should’ve known better. How could she be reckless? Reflecting on the moment, she dropped her guard completely.

Dropping her hands to her hips, Drina was surprised when a hand touched her shoulder. Hestar stood beside her, smiling at the sweet display of a sister caring for her family. Drina half expected her to leave after discovering her identity. Her clothes, language, and magic? She might have gotten away with being a seer since you didn’t need magic to practice the craft. But being able to speak a gypsy dialect was always a dead giveaway. It was never taught outside of bloodlines.

What do I say now? Drina fidgeted with her fingers. Still, Hestar took her hands and interlocked her fingers with hers.

“I guess we'll end it here tonight?”

It was upsetting to conclude the night this way, but it was for the best. “Yeah, I’m sorry about that.”

Hestar shook her head. “Not at all, I understand. Coming from a war-torn place leaves scars. Many refugees pass through here for the night before heading to the port. Scians and Gasfriacians alike.”

Drina flinched. Did Hestar know she was lying from the start? Before Drina gave up hope, Hestar kissed her tenderly.

“I take it you are staying for the festival before you leave then. Are you participating?”

Drina was taken aback. “Festival?”

Nodding like it was common knowledge, Hestar continued. “Yeah. Every year from far and wide, all sorts of gypsies and entertainers come to share their knowledge and talents. It’s quite the event. I just assumed you were here because of that. Given that you read my fortune and can speak the language.”

Drina was shocked. This woman was incredible. With a tilt of her head, she replied optimistically. “And you don’t mind? That I’m a gypsy?”

Unable to hide her smile, Hestar pulled Drina closer, wrapping her arms around her waist.

“Truth be told, I could never get close to one before. Gypsies in these parts always keep to themselves and move in herds. It's tough to have a single conversation, let alone flirt with one. Finding you and your sister in the hostel alone is exceedingly rare. And I wasn’t lying when I said before, none of them are as stunning as you.”

The fire within Drina began to rage again, making it difficult for her to contain any emotions. Small orbs began to float around them, whispering as they passed by. How was this girl able to affect her so dramatically? Drina turned her head, hiding her blush.

“Say I was at the festival. Would you... Come and see me then?”

Hestar giggled, stepping back from her. When she was far enough, they finally let go of their hands as she continued to walk backward. She stopped at the corner of the bunk to lean against it. “I might. You may also see me again even outside of the festival.”

With that, she winked and disappeared behind the bunk. Her soft voice sang back to her, audible enough to hear it.

“Goodnight, Drina.”

Covering her cheeks, Drina’s spirit soared. It made her feel giddy, knowing this girl wanted to see her again even after knowing she was a Traveller. Unable to contain her overflowing joy, she replied seductively as possible.

“Goodnight, Hestar.”

Silence followed while Drina stood there. Leaning against the wall behind her, she covered her face with her hands and replayed the intense exchange they had moments before. It was Drina’s first kiss, and she only wanted to do it again. The flavor of Hestar still lingered while Drina licked her lips. Gods, what a good kisser she was. Pushing away from the wall, Drina remembered her fan on the bed. Still reeling from the kiss, she almost forgot it was there.

Stepping forward, she picked up the fan. Looking at the last fold still propped open made Drina’s gut drop. How did she miss this the first time? Well, maybe it was obvious why she was completely distracted, but this was no longer a laughing matter. Clear and bright was Scutum, the constellation for battle and loss. It was a grave omen, a sign of death. Hestar was in danger.

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