DISCLAIMER: "Legend of the Seeker", its characters, and the situations depicted are the property of ABC Studios, and Terry Goodkind. This piece of fan fiction was created for fun and not profit.
SEQUEL: To Perchance to Dream and A Sentimental Fool.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
SPOILERS: Post 2x10
One of the first things Cara learned about the Mother Confessor after she pledged her allegiance to Richard as the true Lord Rahl was how much the Mother Confessor liked to touch and be touched. The hand-holding with Richard, the gentle brush of her fingers against Zedd's shoulder. These touches weren't allotted to Cara. She wouldn't have accepted them anyway. Cara viewed Kahlan's incessant need to touch and be touched as weakness, a frailty of both mind and body.
Then, Cara learned why. Cara's father had been a good and kind man, until the Mord'Sith twisted Cara into thinking his love was anything but. But, she learned the man she'd hated had always been the father she'd loved.
Kahlan hadn't been so fortunate. Frederick, her father, had been a good and kind man.. while under confession. And when Kahlan's mother died, all the goodness and kindness had been stripped away. After which, Kahlan and her sister had been forbidden to touch, except when forced to use their gifts. Their gifts, the very act of touching, twisted and perverted into something wrong.
So Kahlan, free from her father's tyranny, learned to touch again. To touch without fear or repercussions and Kahlan touched like she was filling the deficit created during that dark time in her life. That her touch could mean love and to have the touch returned was to be loved.
Cara understood. She allowed Kahlan's little touches because, well, Cara couldn't deny Kahlan anything, not anymore. Cara allowed the hand that found the small of her back, the fingers brushing down her arm, the intertwining of fingers, the loose embrace as they shared a bedroll.
And then there were the kisses. Soft, gentle, almost chaste. The hurried and urgent and almost frenzied. Because this was how Kahlan loved, with fingers and lips but never more. Because more meant unlocking her power, unlocking an old fear in which Kahlan's touch meant anything but love.
Today is a lazy day. The sun bright, the air crisp and clean, the breeze keeping the temperature from rising too much. They've taken a break from their search for the Stone of Tears.
Cara sits at the top of a low sloping hill, her back to a tree. Kahlan is between Cara's legs, her arms draped over Cara's thighs, head resting against Cara's stomach, one hand leisurely and surreptitiously playing with Cara's bared fingers. They sit in quiet, enjoying each other's company, watching Richard in the field below, showing off his horse riding skills to the local children.
"He shouldn't show off," Kahlan huffs after bringing Cara's knuckles to her lips and kissing them for the umpteenth time.
"He is the Seeker," Cara says, picking up a long, blade of grass with her free hand and sticking it between her lips. "A demonstration of his skills builds a confidence in the very people he means to protect. Especially on the off chance he may need their support some day."
"That's," Kahlan smiles. "Very pragmatic of you."
"I'm a pragmatic person."
"It'll be evening soon." Kahlan sighs, shifts like she's thinking about getting up then thinks the better of it, slinking back onto Cara. "What do you want to do tonight?"
Cara chews the blade a bit more, mulling over her thoughts. "I think," she pauses, pulling the piece of grass from her mouth. "I want to make love to you tonight."
There's a pregnant pause as Kahlan quietly sucks in a large gasp of air and Cara can feel the brunette tensing beneath her. "Cara," she breathes, tilting her head to gaze up and Cara.
Cara chuckles, placing a hand on Kahlan's head, fingertips brushing the hair from her forehead. "You don't think I would say this if I hadn't found a way?"
Still tense, Kahlan lifts, twists around so she can face Cara. "Cara, I.."
Gloved fingers press to Kahlan's lips, silencing her. "Do you trust me?"
Body already pulsing with anticipation that renders her speechless, Kahlan swallows, nods.
Cara tilts her head forward, leans until their lips meet. "I will only do what you are comfortable with," she husks into Kahlan's mouth. "Nothing more."
The first time, Cara never touches Kahlan.
Kahlan sits on the edge of the bed, sweaty palms clasped together on her lap to keep them from shaking. The door opens and Kahlan's heart stops, she reminds herself to breathe. She carries a flask of wine in one hand, two cups in the other, which she sets down on the table next to the bed and begins filling the cups.
"Are you nervous?" Cara asks and chuckles at Kahlan's wordless and hurried nod. She fills a cup then hands it to the brunette. "Drink this. It will help calm your nerves."
Kahlan gladly accepts the wine, her first swallow large and undainty, draining half the cup. But, as Cara said it would, her nerves begin to calm. As Kahlan drink, Cara takes her cup, walks over to the chair and sits down. She removes her gloves, unlaces her boots between sips of wine and watching Kahlan. The boots removed, Cara leans back in her chair, pulls the cup to her lips, gazing wolfishly over the top at Kahlan. She understands this 'conquest', and the night is only just beginning.
"Would you like another?" she asks.
"No," Kahlan shakes her head, sets her cup down on the table. "It's very strong."
Cara lowers her cup from her lips, leans forward, placing her elbows on her knees. "Are you ready?"
Kahlan's gasp is audible, a hard suck of breath as her cheeks flush.
"Then," Cara pokes the corner of her mouth with the tip of her tongue. "Take off your clothes."
The pink on Kahlan's cheeks darkens but she rises from the bed and, with trembling fingers, begins working on the laces of her leathers. She also notices that Cara has not moved.
"You're not undressing?"
Cara, eyes glued to Kahlan's growing expanse of cleavage, slowly shakes her head. "And miss a second of this?"
Kahlan smiles, wondering if her face will catch fire from all the blushing. But, she also knows how to tease, so she turns her back to Cara, lips spreading wider at Cara's soft growl of frustration. Then, clothes finally pooled at her feet, arms slack at her sides, Kahlan turns around.
Cara's gaze is like a heated blow and Kahlan can feel it striking deep within the pit of her stomach, ending with a hard pulsing between her legs. There's a moment of fear, just a moment, where Kahlan wonders if she is doing the right thing, if this is the right moment, the right time. If this night, if trusting Cara, will end in Cara's death.
Her fears erase the moment she meets the Mord'Sith's eyes. Hands gripping the ends of the armrests tight, Cara rises and crosses the floor. There's heat and hunger in her eyes, there's also amazement, wonderment. Kahlan watches as Cara reaches out, fingertips ghosting over the skin of Kahlan's chest, eyes already counting the light freckles.
Cara lifts her gaze, puzzled, disbelieving. There is no point in remembering the ones before because there has never been one like Kahlan Amnell. "You are.. beautiful."
Kahlan's cheeks flare as she lowers her eyes and smiles shyly.
The wolfish glint returns and Cara gently pushes with her fingers. "Lie down."
Heart doing another flip-flop in her chest, Kahlan does as instructed, sitting down on the edge of the bed before pulling herself further onto the mattress and reclining. Cara sits on the edge, places a hand on the other side of Kahlan's stomach as she leans down, presses their lips together.
"Are you ready for me to make love to you?"
Kahlan looks up like it's the stupidest question in the world. "Yes."
"No," Cara chuckles as she leans back. "You're not."
Kahlan stiffens, brows crinkling in confusion. As a Confessor, she is unable to read a Mord'Sith, and the Mord'Sith are renowned for their calculated duplicity. But, Cara wouldn't be this cruel, not here, not now. Could she?
Cara smiles, but there's no malice in it. She presses her hand on Kahlan's shoulder, keeping the brunette from sitting up. "Kahlan, relax," she says with a firmness in her tone. Kahlan doesn't relax but she stays flat on the mattress. Cara's eyes go to her fingertips, watching them trail over Kahlan's collarbone.
"The Mord'Sith are taught the best way to know pain is to feel it first on one's self. It is the same with pleasure," she lifts her eyes to Kahlan's, the dark and heated look returning.
"It's not like the bards and the sonnets would have you believe. To touch for the first time is not the same as being experienced. I want you to know yourself, Kahlan. I want you," she pauses, tongue rolling over her bottom lip. "To touch yourself. As you imagine I would touch you, as you imagine how you want me to touch you. Understand?"
Kahlan hesitates before nodding. She understands - in theory. But theory and reality are two entirely separate things and, even in her most private moments, Kahlan's never allowed herself the opportunity to be intimate with herself. Not out of shame or propriety but the dark, almost irrational fear of her own powers being uncontrollably unleashed during moments of intimacy.
Fingers on Kahlan's chin, Cara tilts until the blue gaze meets her own. "I will not push you towards any place you do not wish to go."
"I know.." Kahlan stammers. "I just.."
Cara leans back, understands immediately, giving Kahlan the space she's not sure how to ask for.
Afraid to close her eyes, not quite ready to meet Cara's gaze, Kahlan focuses on the ceiling. She rests her hands on her stomach, just below her breasts, feeling her heart hammering heavily within her chest. The seconds tick by as she thinks about Cara's words, how she would like to be touched. First, she brings her fingers to her lips, remembering the sensation and how Cara likes to draw her fingers over them. It's easy, easier than Kahlan realized, imagining her own fingers as Cara's lips, her feather light touches and Kahlan's other hand begins to roam. Over collarbone and breastbone, to her breast, where she circles the areola.
Her fingers play slowly and gently, cupping her breasts, running over the erect nipples. She feels the flutter of her stomach as she paints lazy patterns across the surface.
"Is that how you imagine me to be," Cara chuckles. "Gentle?"
Kahlan dares to meet Cara's gaze as she smiles gently. "I know you are quite capable of gentleness."
The brows lift up Cara's forehead as she purses her lips and nods in agreement. Then, the wolfish grin returns and her eyes rake slowly down Kahlan's body, pausing between Kahlan's legs then back up again. "And do you wish for me to be gentle there?"
"I do not wish," Kahlan swallows. "I know."
"Then show me."
Gazes locked, Kahlan trails a hand lower, through the coarse curls that tickle her fingertips. Lower. She's familiar with the feel of a woman's sex, having touched Cara numerous times. But never herself and her mouth goes slack, brows crinkling as if in pain at that first feel of her fingers against her sex. Her strokes are slow, exploratory, the way her insides clench and twist and coil, but it's not long before her thighs are opening, hips arching as gentle exploration turns to a steady rhythm.
"Cara.." Kahlan whimpers as she feels her magic building, pulsing within her.
"Don't stop," Cara commands. She slides onto the bed, clambers over Kahlan and lifts onto her knees down between Kahlan's calves. And Kahlan watches as Cara's slides her hand down the red leather covering her stomach like a second skin and into the red leather of her pants. Quickly, the fingers are bobbing with an achingly familiar rhythm.
Kahlan finally understands how Cara has found a way for them to be together. She matches Cara's rhythm, fingers gliding, stroking wet and swollen flesh. She now knows how Cara feels when she touches her, she feels that touch on herself.
The magic builds within Kahlan, her eyes misting into black as the tension twists and coils deep within her. Whimpering pants fill the air and it takes Kahlan a moment to realize she's not the one producing the sound. It's Cara. Cara, who's brows furrow as her mouth goes slack, the pumping of her hips turns jerky and, as she throws her head back, Kahlan's name keening off her lips, Kahlan's magic surges, enflames the pulsing heat within her belly. And Kahlan's cries join Cara's.
There is darkness. A good darkness, where everything is warm and tingly. There's Cara's lips, soft and warm and gentle, ghosting along Kahlan's jaw.
Kahlan's eyes snap open. "Did I?"
"Confess me?" Cara lifts her head, eyes still hungry and wolfish. "I still seem to be among the land of the living."
Kahlan clenches her lower lip between her teeth, her fears alleviated, the excitement building in her eyes. "Can we.. do that again?"
"I thought.." Cara rises to her knees, fingers already working on the laces of her leathers. "You'd never ask."
They couple this way many times over the next few weeks, in stalls and caves, in bedrooms, on shores overlooking rivers and lakes. Each time, Cara's touch grows bolder. The first is nothing more than a kiss on Kahlan's shoulder, the next a hand drifting between Kahlan's breasts. Then lips and fingers and skin against skin, and it feels a lot like making love together instead of separately, though Cara always drifts away right before release.
Until the day Cara doesn't drift. Kahlan's sitting against a tree, eyes closed, Cara's hands on her thighs, Cara's lips against her neck, and Kahlan's fingers between her own legs, stroking to release. But then, it's not just Kahlan's fingers against her sex. And she opens her eyes, gazes down and sees hooded green eyes gazing back up at her. She sees, no, feels Cara's tongue against her.
Shock, a mixture of fear and excitement, jolts Kahlan. She snakes her hand out from between her legs, hands flailing for purchase against the ground, the tree behind her. Because her magic's building, already built to a fever pitch and.. not like this, not Cara.
But, Cara's arms are wrapped around Kahlan's thighs tight, tongue lapping and licking like fingers only better and she pushes Kahlan over the edge. Kahlan snaps her eyes closed, nails digging into the bark, into the dirt as her body implodes and explodes.
The energy recedes and Kahlan dares to open her eyes, to survey the damage she's done.
And, Cara's gazing back at her, self-satisfied grin on her lips.
"I.." Kahlan stammers, licks her lips. "I don't understand."
"Transference," Cara explains, pulling herself up to her knees. "Your gift can only be administered through both sight and touch." She grasps one of Kahlan's wrists, brings the hand up to her own neck, the tingle of magic still there thrumming between them. "You can't confess me if you're not touching me."
"It.." Kahlan looks at her own fingers on Cara's throat. "It can't be that simple, can it?"
"In my experience," Cara grins. "It typically is."
It was. And they experimented in the various ways they could be together, touching without touching. Although, Kahlan preferred the blindfolds to the binds around her wrists.. for the most part. Though, she definitely preferred when the binds were around Cara's wrists.
Cara's already undressing when Kahlan makes her way to their room above the tavern. Kahlan pauses inside the door, still in her Confessor's whites from a day spent in a neighboring village with Richard.
"Cara?" Kahlan waits for Cara's inattentive 'hmm' before continuing, watching the growing expanse of honey-colored skin as Cara removes her top. "Can we talk?"
"It must be Tuesday," Cara turns, a smile on her lips. "You only wish to talk on Tuesdays."
Kahlan chuckles weakly, finds something of interest with the hands clasped before her. "It's about Richard."
"What has he done now?" Cara muses. Then she sees the seriousness on Kahlan's face, connects the dots and her smile fades like a sun dipping below the horizon and all that's left is darkness. "Say it, Kahlan."
She can feel the heat rising in her face, the reddening of her eyes as the tears well in the corners. No matter what she says, Cara will take it the wrong way. But, she won't be cowed, made to feel ashamed of her feelings. Kahlan lifts her head, looks Cara straight in the eyes. "I wish to be with Richard."
The words hit Cara harder than any weapon or fist. There's a moment, where her face crumbles, lost and childlike and then, just as quickly, it's gone. Replaced by a hard resolve and angry glint. "I was wrong," Cara says flatly. "You would have made a great Mord'Sith."
It is both a compliment and an insult, the acknowledgement that Kahlan has delivered Cara great pain. Cara snatches her leather top from the bed, stomping towards the door.
"Cara.." Kahlan reaches out, grabs Cara by the elbow.
The blonde whips around, glaring. "Just.. go to him. It's what you want." She jerks her arm from Kahlan's grasp, turning on her heel. "It's what you've always wanted."
A small clearing in the forest and Cara's been here for hours. Skin covered in a thick sheen of sweat, her lungs burn, muscles scream from the physical exertion but she doesn't stop. She's been trained to work through the physical pain. No one trained her for the internal. Pain that goes deeper than any wound caused by an Agiel. So, Cara falls back on what she knows best. She continues with her routines, takes out her frustrations on the forest around her. Agiel's against trees, the bark crackling, wood splintering, bending and breaking.
"I don't know what those trees did.." Cara pauses only long enough to see Richard standing at the edge of the clearing, arms folded over his chest as he leans against a tree. "But, I'm pretty certain they're sorry."
Cara continues with her routine, mimicking a pose as if about to face a large number of attackers. Richard sighs, walks down into the clearing, placing himself dangerously between Cara and her 'attackers'.
"Cara, stop," he sighs and Cara continues. "Don't make me order you." Cara merely snorts derisively. Richard folds his arms over his chest. "You're acting like a child."
And his words hit its mark.
"A child?" Cara whirls towards him, fingers gripping her Agiel's even tighter. "This is so typical. Of both you. Tell me to get in touch with my feelings but only when it suits your whims and not mine. So this is me, getting in touch with my feelings. If you don't like it? Go talk about it with Kahlan."
"She didn't mean to hurt you."
"What she did or didn't mean is irrelevant. You are Lord Rahl, she is your mate." Cara retakes her fighting stance. She swings her arm at an imaginary foe. "I have fulfilled my duties to you. Now go, enjoy your reward." She swings again, the air whistling as her Agiel slices through it. "And leave me in peace."
Richard winces at the accusation. "You know that's not what this is about."
Cara swings her arm and Richard catches it by the wrist. She turns, spinning into him, arm raised and he catches her other wrist and she's momentarily trapped, her back to him.
Richard steps closer, his lips by Cara's ear. "She loves you."
Her sigh is ragged and long, choked by the sudden spasming of her lungs. "She is not meant for me."
"And who are you," Richard releases her wrists, placing his hands on her shoulders and turning her around. "To decide what is or isn't meant for her?"
"Because," Cara lowers her head. "I am the one who can only bring her pain."
Richard smile/frowns, like he's seeing Cara, the real Cara, for the first time. The Cara that's been there all along. They pushed her to explore her emotions and now, here they are, spilling from her like blood from a deep wound. And Cara, completely defenseless to stop the flow. "Just because she wants to be with me doesn't mean she no longer wants to be with you. She loves you." Her eyes lift with a tentative hope. Richard leans, pressing his lips to the corner of her mouth. It's loving and tender, and meant to be familial. But, his lips linger and he feels Cara's eyelashes brush against his cheek as she closes her eyes, a reminder of a time that did and did not happen between them. And the tangled complicated mess of their lives unravels into clear cut lines of simplicity. "She loves you," he whispers again. "As do I."
Breath hitching, Cara swallows the choke threatening to send her chest into spasms. She leans into Richard, allows him to wrap his arms around her as she rests her head against his shoulder. "What do we do now?"
"We," Richard chuckles. "Love her with everything we have."
Cara tucks one of the Agiel's in her hand back into the holster, using her free hand to wrap around Richard's waist. She turns her head, feeling the stubble of Richard's chin against her forehead. "Be.." she sighs, "gentle with her. She's strong. But, she's also incredibly fragile."
"That's funny," Richard smiles. "I was thinking the same thing about you."
Kahlan sits on the bench in front of the hunter's cottage, doing nothing more than watching the fog roll and dissipate under the early morning sun. Her soft, contented smile widens as she sees a splash of red emerge from the expanse of gray and green.
Cara strides up the gently sloping hill, cheeks rosy from her morning hunt. Breakfast, two rabbits tied together by their back legs, dangles by a string off her fingers, Cara's gift to Kahlan and Richard. It's been this way for the past two mornings as Kahlan and Richard stayed nestled within the cottage. While they hadn't seen the Mord'Sith, her presence was always felt with wood, food and drink left by the door. Even if she hadn't approved of this particular arrangement, Cara would never have left the two unprotected.
And Kahlan made a concerted effort to awaken early for the sole purpose of thanking Cara.
Kahlan says nothing as Cara approaches, setting the rabbits down on the ground next to the bench before taking a long swallow from her water bladder.
Cara wipes her mouth with a sleeve before putting back the cork. She tilts her head, eyes narrowing as she examines Kahlan. "You're glowing," she says with a soft smile. "I take it that you found it pleasurable?"
Cheeks tinting with pink, Kahlan lowers her head, unable to hide the grin on her lips. "What Richard lacks in experience, he makes up with his enthusiasm."
Cara nods, chuckling. She lifts a leg to straddle the bench, to keep her Agiel's from brushing against Kahlan. Scoots until their knees touch and the warmth of their bodies intermingles in the tiny space between them.
Of all the pieces of a Mord'Sith's uniform, it is Cara's gloves that fascinate Kahlan the most. She grasps Cara's wrist, pulling the hand into her lap, runs her hand over the leather, over Cara's knuckles. Then, slowly, pinches the leather tips of the fingers, pulling until the skin underneath is revealed and the glove is discarded. Turning Cara's hand so the palm faces upward, Kahlan runs her fingers over the surface, exhaling softly.
This, Cara thinks, is what it means to be loved by Kahlan Amnell. The touches and caresses, to deny Kahlan that would be to her as cruel and unfeeling as her father. Even Cara, the Mord'Sith, could not be that cruel.
Cara lifts her hand, places it against Kahlan's cheek, thumb grazing over the soft lips. "Kahlan?"
"Just.. thank you."
"As a Mord'Sith, I was trained to believe my body was nothing more than a tool, a tool for Lord Rahl to use as he saw fit. I've given my body freely. I've had many lovers, who taught me many things. But, you?" She lowers her hand, grasps Kahlan's by the wrist and places Kahlan's hand against her chest. "You taught me this. And if we are to never lie together again, know that this, my heart, will always be yours."
There's a slight sniffle before Kahlan rushes forward, pressing their lips together, pulling back just enough to lean her forehead against Cara's. "I thought I was the sentimental fool."
"You are," Cara grins.
Kahlan brings both her hands around one of Cara's, capturing it in her grasp. Her fingers work quickly but gently, pulling off Cara's glove and Kahlan turns Cara's hand until the palm is facing up, tracing her fingers over the soft flesh. "I never meant for you to think I didn't want you anymore."
"I know," Cara whispers, watching Kahlan's fingers, feeling her touch, knowing exactly what Kahlan's touch means.
They kiss again, soft, slow, tenderly. Cara content to do nothing but let Kahlan kiss her.
"Richard will be waking soon," Kahlan whispers. Cara inhales sharply, pulling back and Kahlan grabs a handful of leather and pulls Cara back towards her because she's not going to let Cara misinterpret her meaning this time. "And Zedd's not supposed to be back for two more days." She drifts her hand, trailing her fingers over the line where skin meets leather. "I think Richard can handle sleeping outside for a night or two."
"Why Kahlan Amnell," Cara grins cheekily, her purr soft and playful. "Are you trying to seduce me?"
"I don't know," Kahlan grins back, pink tinting her cheeks. "Is it working?"
Cara answers by leaning in, the kiss not so gentle or tender this time. A kiss of heat and hunger, Cara pulls Kahlan's lower lip between her teeth, growls lowly at Kahlan's pained whimper. She would have contented herself with nothing more than a touch. Now that she knows she has more, more is what she wants.
"Cara?" Kahlan swallows, eyes widening as Cara suddenly rises to her feet. She sees the setting of Cara's shoulders, the tensing of muscles and before Kahlan can even think of protesting, Cara's turning towards the door to the cabin..
And kicking it open.
"Seeker! Woods! NOW!"
Is all Kahlan hears and, in a flash, bleary-eyed and confused, his clothes bundled in his hands and held before his crotch, Richard stumbles out of the cabin. Kahlan only able to mouth 'I'm sorry' before Cara's halfway outside the opened door, grabbing Kahlan by the wrist and yanking her inside.
The door is slammed closed and Kahlan is quickly pushed against it, Cara pouncing on her. Gloved and ungloved hands already working on her laces, Cara kisses Kahlan like she's been commanded by Lord Rahl. And it's sensory overload for Kahlan, almost too much, to go from tender and sweet to urgent and hungry in the span of a heartbeat.
Kahlan threads her fingers into Cara's hair, tightens her grip and pulls, because she just needs a moment to catch her breath, gather herself, say the things she's kept inside for too long. Cara breaks the kiss at Kahlan's insistence, their lips only a hair's breath apart, gazing back with glazed and hooded eyes.
"Tell me," Kahlan pants, pleads. "You love me."
"I am telling you," Cara says with a swipe of her tongue up the tip of Kahlan's chin to her lips. "I'm telling you like you tell me every time you touch me."
Kahlan had no words after that. Cara understands, this is how Kahlan loves - by touching and being touched. So Cara loves her, she loves Kahlan with her touch, with lips and tongue and teeth and fingers. She loves with the parts of her that have no physical form but touch anyway. When Kahlan's left breathless, sated and satisfied, Cara touches her all over again.
Cara understands, this is how Kahlan loves. And Cara's prepared to love Kahlan for eternity.
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