It had been three weeks since the group fled from the Ra Lagora. Zel, who had used up a tremendous amount of energy, was weak most of the time. Amelia tried to take care of him at first, but after a nasty accident that resulted in his clothes getting burned, they decided to just take turns. But Amelia was proven incompetent, and Lina wasn't the nurturing type. Xelloss, who secretly had wanted to help, was called away by his master, the Beastmaster. That left Gourry, who was more than willing to do it.
For the first two weeks, Gourry watched over Zel like a mother hen, always anticipating his needs and making sure Zel was comfortable. At night, he soothed away the nightmares, allowing Zel the chance for some much needed rest. Gourry made sure not to overdo it. Zel was embarrassed enough at needing help, especially during the first week when he could barely move on his own. During those times, Gourry made idle chatter, getting Zel's mind away from whatever he needed help with at the time. During the second week, Gourry only helped when it was truly needed, and even then he let Zel do as much as he could on his own. For this, Zel was extremely grateful. Had it been Amelia, he was sure he'd been strapped to the bed to make sure he didn't exert himself.
Zelgadis' strength began to return by the third week. Though slow and a little stiff, he was able to handle his more personal errands on his own. Zel privately thought it was due to the care-giver. Even Lina admitted that Gourry handled the extra responsibility well. Of course, there were other things motivating him, but Gourry decided not to mention that. Though he was a little sad at losing the chance to take care of Zel, Gourry knew the chimera wouldn't want to be coddled for the rest of his life. And Gourry was still needed sometimes when the nightmares came back.
One bright morning Zel joined the group for breakfast. He had coffee while everyone else was attacking their plate. Setting his mug down, Zel announced his plan to go practice some of his magic to see if his skills were intact. Of course, this led to a debate, with Amelia protesting loudly.
"But Mister Zelgadis! You've been through too much to go wandering around. And you need to rest! That spell was strong, and it took a lot out of you. As a protector for innocents everywhere, I must insist that you get back to bed!"
Zel shook his head. "Look Amelia..."
Lina paused from inhaling her food. "You know, Amelia has a point, Zel. You were like completely wiped out for awhile. You might not be ready to try using your magic just yet. Heck, you saw what happened when I used the Giga Slave. That Ra Lagora was even stronger. I really think you should give it some more time."
The chimera choked on his coffee. "Now just a minute...!"
Zel didn't get a chance to say anything more as Gourry took Zelgadis by the shoulders and pushed him up the stairs, back to his room. "Amelia is right, and what Lina says usually goes. Don't worry, you can try you magic later." Gourry had a strange smile on his face as he guided the protesting chimera back, under the approving gaze of Lina and Amelia. As Gourry closed and lock the door, Zel did a slow burn.
"Shh..." Gourry placed a finger to Zel's lips. "They might hear us. Lina will probably kill me for this, but what else is new?" Gourry peeked out the window. "I think we can climb down, if you feel up to it."
It took a minute for Zel to comprehend. He rewarded Gourry with a shy grin. "You're sneaking me out? That could be danger for us. You know what Amelia and Lina will do when they find out?"
"They'll beat me up like they always do, I guess." Gourry smiled. "Nothing different there." He opens the window and starts climbing down. "There's a hay cart down here in case you slip, but be careful."
Gourry with a plan that will actually work. I always knew you weren't as dull as you pretended to be. Zel quickly scrambled out the window. He hit the ground running, following Gourry to the woods on the edge of town.
Gourry watched as several large rocks ice over. Zel then touched them, shattering the rocks to pieces. Gourry smiled brightly.
"Looks like your magic is back."
Zel nodded, grinning himself. "Looks like it. Though I should be careful about any large spells like Elmekia Lance or Ra Tilt. Still, a few more days, and I should be able to cast those as well."
"That's good to hear. You'll be back to your old self in no time." Gourry flopped down on the grass, closing his eyes. "It's nice and peaceful here. Maybe we can catch a nap before the girls kill me."
Zel watched Gourry with pained eyes. There's so much I want to tell you, but I'm not sure if I have the right. You've been there for me; even when I was at my lowest, you stayed by my side. I know you consider me a friend, but can you think of me as something more?
Sighing, Zel sat down next to Gourry. It appeared the blond was asleep. Zel had to resist an urge to run his fingers through the soft locks. Instead, he stared off into the blue sky, his eyes glazing over...
"Ne, Zel. You okay? Need to go back?"
Startled, Zel glanced down. Gourry's eyes were still closed, his face relaxed. It was all the chimera could do not to curl up next to him. To trace his fingertips down the side of Gourry's face. To brush his lips...
Quit it, Greywers. He's your friend. He probably doesn't... He's probably still has a crush on Lina anyway, or Sylphiel perhaps. Either way, you need to get over it. Even though... Mo`re did say I should try talking to him. But he probably didn't mean it like that. I hate this. That's it, I know what I'll do. I'll leave. Tomorrow, when they're all asleep. I can't keep going on like this, and I don't want him hating me. I'll just leave a note saying it's best this way. Now that I know about the Ra Lagora, every half-brained magician wanting to take over the world will be after me anyway. They'll understand. It's... it's better like this...
Absorb in his own thoughts, Zel didn't notice Gourry staring up at him. He blinked, shielding the sun from his eyes.
Gourry sat up. His posture was tensed. He gave Zel a curious look before he spoke.
"We should get back. You really should take it easy for a few more days. If Lina finds out I let you tire yourself out, she'll Dragu Slave me for sure."
Gourry. I'm going to have to leave soon. But before I go, I should at least thank you. Zel bowed his head, more to avoid looking at Gourry than anything else. "Gourry, I want... I want to thank you. You have been a tremendous help to me since we got back. I hope I will be able to repay your kindness one day..."
"You're going to leave, aren't you?"
Zel stared at him, eyes wide open. "Wha... what?"
"You're going to leave. I can tell. You get the same look every time you go off looking for a cure. Always a little guilty, like you've been caught. But since there's nothing around here you could really use, the only thing I can guess is that you're going to leave for good. Am I right?"
Zel could feel his face doing a slow burn. It was bad enough he was going to go. Bad enough that he *did* feel guilty about it. But to get caught so easily... and by Gourry no less. He hung his head, his hands clasp together like a prayer.
"Yes, you're right. I thought it would be... safer for all of you if I left. It will eventually get out that I possess the Ra Lagora. With that much power, I know I'm going to be targeted by some less than savory people. It may not be safe for any of you if I continue to travel with you."
A whisper, a plea. A request filled with remorse. Sad, longing, wistful. Zel raised his face, unsure if he'd even heard the words, or if his mind had created them.
Gourry was sitting close to the chimera. His blue eyes shimmered with grief and sorrow. Zel's breath caught, his heart hammering so loud he was sure Gourry could hear it as well. He almost fainted on the spot when Gourry reached out, fingers brushing the hair from Zel's face.
"I don't want you to go, Zelgadis."
Shocked, Zel barely stammered out, "Wh-why?"
"Because... because..." Gourry sighed and just pulled Zel into a tight embrace, stroking the light violet hair. Zel, stunned, didn't bother resisting. He laid quietly in the taller man's arms, his mind thrown into utter chaos. When Zel was certain he couldn't get anymore confused, Gourry's next words proved him wrong.
"Because I don't want you to leave me."
I'm dreaming. I'm back at the inn, in bed, and I'm dreaming. That's it. This isn't real. Just another dream to torture me. Zel closed his eyes. If it was a dream, he really didn't want it to end like the other ones did. But he knew it would. They always do. A tear fell as he unconsciously clung to Gourry. Please, just a few more minutes, that's all I ask. Just let me dream a little longer...
"Zel, if you want to fireball me to next week, I'll understand. But... I promised myself that I was going to let you know... I can't keep... even if you hate me, I have to..." He tilted Zel's face up to meet his own, and kissed the chimera deeply on the lips.
Gods... he feels... but it's only... not a dream... but... don't under... oh, don't... stop...
It finally sunk in. It wasn't a dream. Gourry, the person he'd had a crush on for the longest time. Gourry, the one who he'd grown to depend on. Gourry, the one he loved, was kissing him. He was kissing Zel. A chimera. A freakish, ugly, hideous monster. A used chimera. Gourry was kissing him, and by the gods, Zel was kissing him back.
No... no, Gourry, this is wrong. You can't kiss me. You can't want me. Not now. I'm not good enough now. No... Zel placed his hands on Gourry's chest, finding the strength to break the kiss and push himself away.
"Gou-kun... Gourry... I'm sorry... I..."
The sadness radiating from the young man almost shattered Zel's self-control. "Ne, Zel. It's okay. I shouldn't have done that. I'm sorry."
He's sorry?! Oh Gods... It was too much. Zel covered his face with his hands, weeping brokenly.
"Damn. I'm so stupid. Zel, I'm sorry. I didn't mean..."
"How could you?" the chimera sobbed. "How could you possibly want me? I'm a freak! A used freak! I'm ugly and dirty and disgusting... You can't want me now! No one could!" The pain he kept buried rose to the surface, bursting forth in a stream of harsh words and tears. "How can you even stand the sight of me when I can barely look at myself?! No, you can't! You can't want me... you can't..." His voice cracked, leaving a hurt and confused person with a broken heart huddled on the grass.
Gourry watched silently, feeling his own eyes grow damp. He pulled Zelgadis back into his arms. He struggled for a minute before breaking down completely, hiding his face against Gourry's chest. The blond rubbed Zel's back in gentle, soothing strokes, resting his chin in Zel's hair.
"No, Zel. You're not ugly, and you're not used. I... I've wanted you for a long time, but I was scared you wouldn't want me. I didn't want to lose you as a friend. But you're not a freak. Gods, Zel, you're one of the most beautiful people I've ever met. Please, don't say that about yourself. I... I love you..."
"H-how c-could you?"
"Zel." Gourry pulled back, looking directly into Zel's eyes.
"I love you because... well, I just do. I'm not that great with words, so it's really hard for me to explain. But I do love you."
"Gou-kun..." Zelgadis closed his eyes, a small seed of hope growing in his heart. Could he? Could he really... really feel that way... about me? He looked up again, reaching with trembling fingers to touch Gourry's cheek.
"Gourry..." He was close, so close. He was on the edge, looking over the cliff. If he said it, there was no going back. Now or never.
"I... love you... too."
He'd been leaning against Gourry one minute, but was suddenly on the ground the next. Gourry was busy tracing the stones in his neck with a very eager tongue, making the chimera squirm. He yelped when the cool air met his skin. Gourry had opened Zel's shirt, hands wandering over him.
"Gourry! Someone will see us!"
"Naw. I could tell by the road that no one's been here for awhile." He continued kissing Zel along his neck and shoulder. "Hard, yet smooth. Are you like that all over, Zel-kun?"
Zel's face did a slow burn. "Gourry! What about Lina and Amelia? You know they'll come looking for us!"
"Then we'll give them a show."
"Gourry! You're beginning to sound like Xelloss."
"Is that such a bad thing?" He'd managed to slip a hand down Zel's trousers, pulling a deep moan from the chimera.
"Oh gods... Gourry... not here... the others... oh... ah..."
Gourry leaned close, his usual sunny smile was devilish and full of mischief. "Okay, just this once. But I might not be able to control myself next time. Since you wanted to practice your magic, why not fly us over to that cave we saw a few miles out? No one will bother us there."
Zel just stared at him. Is this real? Is Gourry really asking... telling me too... Gods... With a nod, Zel cast a Raywing, carrying them both to the cave mentioned. When Gourry's hand wandered over Zel's ass, his brain shut down, breaking his concentration. They fell in a heap at the mouth of the cave.
"Need to work on that landing, Zel-kun." Gourry grinned. He grabbed Zel's hand, pulling him right up into another passionate kiss.
Moaning, Zel wrapped his arms around Gourry's neck. He didn't fight at all. Gourry led the unresisting chimera deep into the cave. He broke the kiss long enough to grab Zel's cape, stretching it on the ground. His eyes held only love as he laid Zel down, covering the stone-smooth body with his own.
Zel sighed. "Y-yes..." Actually, it didn't matter. He was in Gourry's arms, kissing him and being kissed by him. At that moment, nothing else mattered. "Gourry..."
The soft, rich voice assailed his senses. Gourry had a sudden urge to rip the remaining clothes off Zel's body. He squelched it quickly.
No, better not. There'd be no way to explain it to the girls. Besides, I might scare him, and that's the last thing I want. But I wonder, can he feel anything through though his skin? He quickly stripped Zel of his garments, running a nail lightly down his side. A low groan gave Gourry the answer he needed.
Yup, he can feel. Lots.
Underneath him, Zel whimpered and squirmed. His fingers clawed at the rocky ground. He raised up, capturing Gourry's lips in another kiss. The flash of heat weakened him. He fell back, panting.
"You're still... clothed..."
"Really? I'll have to fix that." Gourry all but ripped off his own clothes. He leaned over Zel, eyes dancing. "Sorry, but I've been waiting for a real long time for this." Gourry plundered Zel's mouth with his tongue, enjoying the taste and feel. One of Zel's thighs brushed against his aroused flesh. The sensation drew a sharp gasp from the taller man. Zel became worried.
"S'kay. Don't worry. Just trust me, okay? Can you trust me, Zel?"
Staring up at those familiar blue eyes, Zel nodded. "Yes, I trust you."
"Good." Gourry's lips traveled down Zel's chest, making stops here and there to tease the stones decorating the blue skin. He worked his way lower, pausing briefly to look up at Zel.
"You want me to?"
Zel bite his lip hard. Get on with it! He was burning up inside. The heat scorching his senses. He looked down at Gourry, his breath quick and shallow.
Briefly wondering what stone tasted like, Gourry nibbled his way up Zel's shaft, teasing the tip with his tongue before plunging his mouth down the entire length. Though smooth like marble, the flesh was hot and wanting. The taste was like nothing Gourry experienced before, inciting him even more. He grazed the length with his teeth. The resulting shriek was very satisfying.
Zel's fingers entangled themselves in Gourry's long hair. He couldn't keep still, his hips riding up. He tossed his head violently, his breath erratic. Gourry teased the underside of Zel's cock. The chimera thrashed and bucked, crying out loudly. His nerves were awashed in desire and lust. He felt the orgasm rush to the surface.
"G-gourry... I... stop... I..."
No way. Gourry's head bobbed quickly, drawing hard on the stoned flesh. He felt the quivering in Zel's thigh. Gourry plunged down. The chimera screamed, releasing a flooded into his lover's wanting mouth. Inwardly, Gourry smiled, continuing his attentions. The scream rose to a shriek. Zel gently tore Gourry's head away, shivering.
Mine now. He drew the chimera into his arms, stroking the needle sharp hair. "You okay?"
Zel nodded. "Never felt... not like... I mean... Gourry..."
"Shhh." Gourry nuzzled the back of Zel's neck, smiling. "Just relax. I don't want to push you."
"What about you?"
"Don't worry. You can pay me back when you're back to yourself again. Hey, can you do that while using your Levitation spell?"
This made Zel blush ferociously. "Gourry!"
"Just a thought." He smiled, then laid down next to the chimera. "I think we have a few minutes before Amelia and Lina go on the warpath. Lets enjoy them while we can."
Zel nodded, spooning up against Gourry, his lids growing heavy. "Gou-kun, thank you, for everything."
"Shh. Don't thank me. I wanted to do it. Just rest. We'll go back in a bit." Gourry sighed contently as Zel gave in and fell into a peaceful slumber.
Just the beginning. I'm not letting you go again, Zelgadis.
Outside, standing under a tree not too far from the cave, a familiar figure smiled before walking away.
Well now, this calls for a change of plans. I wouldn't mind sharing myself. But will Gourry? If not, I may have to take Zel away from him. I hope Gourry is open to new experiences though. Just think, I could either get two people to dominate, or the dear chimera would have two masters. Either, an enjoyable time by all. Now, how do I convince Gourry of this?
With a mental shrug, the robed figure disappeared from sight.
Back to Hibernal Heart or Back to the Thorned Roses or Back to the Roses?