Slayers: Mirror Three
There was a moment of cautious silence as the ragged travelers led Lina and Naga into the village, then a sudden cry of joy. Figures streamed out of the homes, embracing their loved ones they had thought dead and gone, tearful reunions going on all around them.
"Wonder when that feast will start," Lina murmured, her red hair flowing around her as she studied the place with a wary gaze.
"Lina!" Naga scolded her.
"Carolyn!" an older man threw his arms around the little blonde, the man dressed in the sort of formal robes a mayor might wear.
"Daddy," Carolyn hugged him back.
"How is this possible?" he murmured, his steely gray hair pushed back from his face.
"It was these two noble paladin's," the beaming Carolyn gestured to where Naga and Lina stood, "who saved us from the dragons." She drew her father over, "Lady Naga, Lina, I would like you to meet my father, Lord Dennis."
"Dennis?" Naga blinked.
Lord Dennis shrugged, "We're an informal people." He smiled broadly, putting a hand on both of their shoulders, "Thank you so much for saving my daughter!"
"You're welcome," Lina said dryly, "where's the food?"
With a sudden move Lord Dennis clasped them close and whispered to Naga, "And if you lay one hand on my daughter, I'll kill you myself."
"Ah, what?" Naga was clearly stunned as the older man strode off, shouting out commands for the preparation of a feast.
"Obviously he knows his daughter pretty well," Lina noted dryly.
"Lady Naga," Carolyn all but slinked over to them, her sweet smile reserved for Naga alone, "would you care for me to escort you around the town?" Looking down modestly she drawled, "There are so many private corners I'd love to show you."
"Ah.. I.." Naga looked desperately at Lina.
"I'm sorry," Lina said firmly, "but I and my partner need to discuss where we'll be journeying to next. Please, excuse us."
Carolyn all but pouted as Lina and Naga strode away. "Maybe we could hook up later?" she called out hopefully.
"Shut up and keep walking," Naga muttered to Lina softly.
The two women made it around the corner of one of the buildings before Lina lost it, leaning there laughing uncontrollably. "Private corners," Lina chuckled softly, "I'm sure she has one or two she'd like to show you!"
"This isn't funny," Naga answered, but her lips twitched in an involuntary smile.
"Oh, yes it is," Lina grinned. She tilted her head to the side, "You do realize she's going to try to sit right beside you at the victory dinner."
"Goddess," Naga muttered to herself softly, running her hand through her short black hair, "this has never happened to me before." She gave Lina a pleading look, "I suppose we couldn't skip the dinner, just leave?"
"What?!" Lina blurted.
"Right, dumb question," Naga grimaced. "So how are we going to get through this without a protective daddy trying to kill me?"
"Huh," Lina frowned, looking cutely smart. A smile slowly spread across her face, "I have an idea." A little pause as she looked over at Naga, "You aren't going to like it."
"Anything that doesn't start a military vendetta, I like," Naga said firmly. Lina leaned forward, softly whispering in Naga's ear as the woman's eyes widened. "You're right, I don't like it," she finally admitted, "but I think it'll work."
Carolyn's eyes lit up as the two women came back around the corner. She adjusted her top, taking a breath to make her most.. formidable aspects more visible. She was about to move over to them when they stopped, partially concealed from the crowds.
Lina put a hand on Naga's arm as she said loudly, "You forgot something, love."
"Oh?" Naga looked down at her dramatically.
"This," Lina went up on tiptoes, grabbing Naga by the back of the head and drawing her down into a fierce kiss. They seemed to meld together, the kiss continuing as Naga took control, cradling the smaller woman close.
Carolyn stood frozen as the two women walked away, hand in hand. "It seems she's taken," the blonde sighed to herself wistfully, "too bad."
Naga was careful not to break into a run, a blush staining her pale cheeks as they walked away from where the clearly bemused Carolyn stood. "So do you think we convinced her?" she murmured to Lina softly.
"Oh, yes," Lina agreed. She looked up at Naga, a blush to her own cheeks as she demanded, "Where did you learn to kiss like that?"
Naga's cheeks went a deeper red, if that was possible. "My Lina and I were together a long time," was the bashful answer, "we had a lot of time to.. uh.. experiment."
"I did not need to know that," Lina groaned.
The towns people came out as they walked together through the village, the men and women offering their thanks for the rescue from the dragons. Naga turned down all the gifts that were offered them, giving Lina a scolding look whenever she was about to take one.
An older lady, still regally beautiful and dressed in finery approached them as dinner time neared. "I am the Lady Alex," she introduced herself, her black streaked with silver hair catching the sunlight, "I also wanted to thank you for saving my daughter, Carolyn."
Naga and Lina exchanged wary looks before Lina finally asked, "You aren't going to try threatening Naga, too?"
Lady Alex shook her head with a smile, "My apologies. My husband is rather vigorous in protecting our daughter's perceived virtue."
"Perceived?" Naga raised an eyebrow.
"I am well aware that my daughter has not been chaste," Alex said to them dryly. She looked up at Naga, "Thank you for letting her down easily with your little show."
Lina took Naga's arm, smiling sweetly, "Show? What show?"
"As you wish," Alex gave them both a smile. She hesitated, "My husband has been informed of your relationship, as well, and I believe he has arranged for you two to share a room this evening." With that, she walked away.
"Oh, dear," Naga muttered to herself softly.
Lina gave the taller woman a smile, "You sound just like Amelia, you know." She took a deep breath, patting Naga's arm, "We'll manage."
Bells rang out, announcing that it was time to eat. The dinner was held in the great meeting hall of the town, a massive table covered by dishes as the town's people gathered along it's length. Lina and Naga were seated in positions of honor at the front, right beside the Lord and his family.
Sadly, that put Carolyn on one side of the visibly pale Naga, and Lina on Naga's other side. Carolyn was dressed in finery, a sleek little gown of the finest fabrics that clung to her graceful form, highlighting her many charms. Charms she went to a great deal of trouble to present to Naga, from bending over to grab a glass to 'dropping' her napkin.
Still, Lina and Naga tried to act like a perfect couple, seemingly lost in each other even as they tried their absolute best to ignore Carolyn while still talking politely. Alex was a great help to them, and even Lord Dennis relaxed enough to treat them as his honored guests, and not potential seducers of his bosomy daughter.
"Thank the goddess that's all over," Naga muttered as they retreated to the bedroom they had been assigned.
"You have to admit the food was good," Lina offered cheerfully.
Before Naga could answer there was a soft knock on the door. Naga walked over and opened it, only to freeze in place.
Carolyn stood there, a smile on her face, a nearly transparent gown rustling around her body. A finely shaped body at that, utterly revealed by the thin material. In a breathy voice she smiled, "I was wondering if the two of you would like some company tonight?"
"Ah.." Naga stood there with her mouth open.
"I'm sorry," Lina took hold of Naga's arm to give the gorgeous blonde a dangerous smile, "but we're exclusive."
Carolyn gave Lina a glare, then looked up at Naga. "I do not understand why you would be with one so poorly endowed," she frowned.
"She has other qualities," Naga gave the woman a grave look, "like tact and charm."
"Humph!" Carolyn turned to stalk down the hallway.
"Thank you," Lina blinked once she was gone.
"You're welcome," Naga sighed, shutting and locking the door.
To be continued...