Magic, Love, Family Pt. 05

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tagIncest/TabooMagic, Love, Family Pt. 05

Author's Note: It is a fictional tale. All characters engaging in sexual activities are over the age of 18 years.
This is the fifth part of the series. I would advise first-time readers to read the previous parts before reading this one. Do refer to the glossary and maps in chapter zero, as itwill make things clearer.
In this chapter, we follow Raymond and Rose as they attack Tristinia. As with the previous parts, it is light on the sexual content.
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(Scene 1)
Raymond breathed out a little erratically. His chest hummed up and down as he took his seat on the lush ground beside Rose.
"Your stamina is still well below average."
"Hmmm…" Raymond agreed with his redheaded cousin's assessment. He calmed his breathing as he gazed at the gradually thawing ice caps. The distant pine trees had a green shade to them which looked incredibly beautiful in the setting sun rays. The tall trees still had flakes of snow on their leaves. The vegetation was starting to peek out from its winter slumber.
The valley ahead carried a stark difference from the forests of Gelodesh. Raymond marveled at the natural beauty of Beltran as he rubbed his hand over the hard, slightly moist ground and felt the softness of the grass. To be able to drink in the natural scenery in the company of a world-class beauty he would be thanking his good fortune, if not for the sourness from his one-sided defeat in their sparring session.
"Well, you were a little better than the previous times, so it's not all bad…" Rose said in a consoling tone when Raymond looked a little down.
"Yeah? You think so?" There was a thin smile on his face, happy to hear that there was progress for his hard work.
"Hmmm… good!"
Raymond brought his sword a little close to examine its sharp edge. Tracing the cold metal between his fingers, he exclaimed inwardly at the fine craftsmanship. He loved his sword, a precious gift from his cousin sitting beside him.
He replayed his moves from their spar a few minutes ago, trying to make out where he was going wrong. And the conclusion he reached, the same as every other time, that he, his body was still far off from comparing to Rose's. His skills were good, he could predict and understand her attack pattern, however, his body couldn't keep up with her speed and power.
'Still too weak…'
It had been more than a couple of weeks since Rose arrived in Beltran. They had a little time to prepare before the allied forces moved against Tristinia, thus commenced the extra hard difficulty level crash course on how to properly utilize his newfound awakened power. Rose was a little surprised at first due to the nature of his recovery. It was a swift and complete recovery after his mana channels were damaged due to overzealousness.
Raymond remembered how he haughtily asked her not to hold back against him and how then he proceeded to bite the dust every damn time. Rose was special in the sense that she didn't have to put much effort to train, her naturally violent manner and her affinity with fire element had propelled her to unimaginable height in Raymond's narrow view.
The slightly cold but comforting breeze against his skin somewhat pacified his angst and the memory of his recent injury, the bedridden condition due to it, did the trick to console him of the importance of patience. He couldn't become strong overnight; it was a gradual process one where he would have to put in the hard yards.
"I wonder what Mom is doing right now…"
Rose turned to face him and spoke in a low tone, "I'm a little worried about how the discussions are going…"
Raymond's mind was blank for a few seconds before he caught on to his cousin's worries. Suzanne had left to discuss the terms of the cooperation with the Tibals. The upcoming joint military expedition against Tristinia was to be the first one for the combined forces of the Northern Forest Alliance and the giant that was the Tibal Alliance.
"She should be fine," Raymond muttered, his tone unconcerned. "It's Aunt Suzy after all!"
Rose shook her head a little concernedly. "And? So what? It's not just about her, her personal power or capabilities, there's more to it."
Raymond seemed to be taking in her words before he waved his hand dismissively. "Nah! She would be alright; after all, she was chosen as the representative for a reason. She is the most suitable candidate for it in all of our three kingdoms." By the end of his sentence, Raymond was quite convinced and it showed in his tone and expression.
"Hope so…"
His thoughts inevitably turned towards his aunt and that wonderfully salacious night. As it happened though, Suzanne had been long gone before he woke up the next morning. She had left him a touchy letter and apologized for her abrupt exit. She had also asked him in the letter to take care of the lovely Ingrid.
Raymond had been a little taken aback after his mind cleared up of the groggy memories. He was a little lost and a lot overwhelmed. Most of it all though he was upset that his Aunt Suzy had left before meeting him, however, he understood the grave importance of her departure and just sighed in helplessness.
When Raymond had later met Ingrid, all his memories came rushing back to him and it made him blush a little. He didn't quite know how to behave around Ingrid after their tryst. Quite obviously there wasn't a repeat of that night's event. Maybe because the glue between them, Suzanne, was absent or maybe because of something else but both of them never seem to be comfortable around the other, blushing and behaving like two teenagers in love.
He shook his head to get rid of the thoughts about Ingrid as he felt himself getting aroused by the lustful memories.
"Nothing!" Raymond said a little loudly, ashamed of the dirty direction of his thoughts.
"You wanna go again?"
"Huh?" Raymond took a second before he understood Rose's intention. He, too, wanted to get in one last session before the sun went completely down. "Oh, wait… before that… let me ask you something first…"
"I'm listening," Rose responded with her gaze fixed ahead on the distant, tall, trees.
"You know, this would be my first time… on an expedition… and I've never really… you know, killed anyone…"
"What's there to think about it?" Rose flicked her stray, long lock of red hair behind her as she continued, "You just treat them as pieces of meat… they are just enemies, nothing more and nothing less… don't dwell on it too much."
Raymond was shocked by her cavalier attitude towards the life of a fellow human. Especially how she asked him to treat them as pieces of meat. He couldn't believe she held such disdain towards her enemies. However, before he could ask her about it, Rose said something else which caught his attention.
"I just mean that everyone has a different way to deal with it. Don't make it a bigger deal than it is. There's always the first time." The battlefield will get chaotic so make sure and keep close to Ingrid at all times! And-" Rose took a deep breath as she turned towards him. Her expression was serious and she concluded in a grave tone. "During the fight, stay away from me!"
Raymond blinked his eyes, taking in the meaning of her words. She had said a lot of things in those few sentences, but most pressing for him was to ask about the last bit. "Why? Why should I stay away from you?"
"I'm serious!" Rose glared, her tone allowing for no further question on the matter. "You will know later. So don't ask me now…"
Raymond stared into her eyes and studied her face. She was beautiful, as always. There was a sharpness to her features that he had never found in anyone else. Her red hair was blowing in the mild breeze, and the leisurely way she was sitting on with her knees bent made him shudder in awe. Her tight pants were an ode to her figure and her white shirt didn't do justice to her fit figure. The blue mantle hanging to her back added a regality to her look, it suited her.
He extended his hand and took the mantle between his fingers. Feeling the soft touch of the velvety cloth, his vision was taken by its blue color. He got reminded of an azure haired beauty as he kept staring at it.
It was a bittersweet feeling. The thought of her was always enough to bring a smile on his face, at the same time though, it told him of the wide chasm between their abilities. He was still ways away from catching up to her, to be able to look in her eyes with pride.
"Say," Raymond began, his thoughts now completely dominated by his azure haired cousin and his cute but silent sister. "Have you ever felt like… that… you… maybe are in love with two people at the same time?"
"What?!" Rose spurted as she eyed him suspiciously.
"Come on, it must have happened to you!"
"Haha… is little ray ray in love? Hahah…" Rose laughed uproariously and slapped his back. She kept shaking her head as if in disbelief.
"Yeah-yeah-yeah very funny. Now, can you answer my question?"
Rose smiled mischievously. "I've never been in love with two people at once but I've been with two people at once, if you know what I mean…" She ended her sentence with a smirk.
"What?!" It was now Raymond's turn to be shocked. He couldn't swallow that she would say something like that. He stared at her with his eyes wide open and his mouth hung agape.
Rose laughed heartily at his shell-shocked reaction. It wasn't in their habit to share each other's sexual conquests. In fact, Raymond downright despised to hear about her countless sexual exploits, so much so that he would leave the room in a hurry whenever she seemed to be about to brag about her latest encounter.
She seemed happy to have caught him off-guard with her comment. After laughing for a while more, she went silent as she gazed at the valleys ahead. With a contemplative look on her face, she muttered, "I don't think I have ever had that problem, to be honest."
"To tell you the truth," Rose continued in the same vein without paying attention to him, "I don't think I have ever been in love. Yeah… I am sure I have never actually loved someone like that…" She turned to him and smiled.
"Are you for real?"
"Uh huh."
"Why, though?"
"Hmmm…" Rose took her time before she continued, "I don't know, never found anyone worthy, I suppose, not powerful enough…"
Raymond sighed at her response. He felt a little sad for his cousin. He always thought that she was a muscle head who didn't value herself or her relationships, in actual case the truth was something else entirely.
"And as for your "problem", it's not a problem at all!"
"What does that mean?" Raymond asked sharply.
"Yeah, if you love two people or three people or whatever there's no problem. Go with what your heart says… and if you aren't able to decide between them… just have them both… if you can't do it, that just means you are not strong enough…"
"Strong enough?" Raymond murmured, deep in thought.
"Yeah… now, come on, if you want to get in one last session for today, there is not much time left before dark!"
(Scene 2)
Royal Court, Tristinia Royal Palace
It was an empty hall. A large, ancient hall with some of its structures having seen better days. The metal chairs had their sides peeled out in some places and the cushions looked worn out. The windows were large and airy with an old man sitting at the throne.
The king's back was a little hunched and his shoulder-length white hair was thin at the front of his head. His beard was unkempt and his robe seemed too big for his thin build. He was resting tiredly with his back to the throne and his hands on the armrest. His stare directed towards the door was distant and empty.
Suddenly a man came swaggering in and broke the bleak and depressing atmosphere of the hall. The man was tall and well built. His aura was a little unstable pointing to his recent breakthrough. His dark hair was cut short and he had a long scar on his right cheek. As he got closer to the throne he reined in his aura and bent his knee.
"Your majesty!" He called out respectfully.
"Jorg, good of you to come to meet me."
"Your majesty, I have something to say regarding-"
"Did the magic stone I gave to you was of any help?" The king interrupted Jorg's words and asked while coughing.
Jorg, a little surprised by the question and the timing of it, had a frown on his face. "… Certainly, your majesty. I have broken through to 6* level."
"Good, good… You are the most talented awakened warrior of our kingdom, it's good that you have had a breakthrough in your strength. The Goddess will be happy!"
"Yes, your majesty. I have something urgent to-"
"Will you be joining me in my prayers tonight?"
"Your majesty?" Jorg asked, confused at the sudden mention of the royal evening prayers. He had been part of it a number of times and knew that it was a long and tiresome process. He didn't believe that they had time for such things now.
An army nearly five times their own size was right on their doorsteps, about to attack and raze them to the ground. This was no time for praying and making merry. He instinctively decided to ignore the king's question, though it may seem disrespectful, now was not the time to worry about such unimportant matters.
"Your majesty, would you not reconsider your decision?" Jorg pleaded.
The king didn't seem to be bothered by the apparent disrespect and spoke in a wheezing voice, "The goddess has already spoken."
"But, your majesty!" Jorg stood up and raised his voice. "Half the soldiers have deserted our ranks and the ones remaining are too scared to face the enemy. Most of the nobles have defected to enemies' ranks already. Please reconsider, your majesty! There's still time left to surrender and save ourselves from mass destruction."
The king sighed and had a bout of coughing attack, when Jorg tried to go help, the king gestured for him to stop. "The goddess spoke to me. This is to be our test. On the other side lies prosperity and happiness. I even heard Rolof's voice, he seems to be happy while staying with the goddess. He seemed really happy…"
Jorg started at the mention of young prince Rolof's name. A young boy with blonde hair, and a cute smile surfaced in his mind. It was quite unfortunate that the young prince passed away in a hunting accident.
"Your majesty-"
"It's time for my rest." The king said and waved off, signaling for Jorg to leave his presence.
Jorg was crestfallen as he exited the throne room. All his efforts turned out to be for naught. He had failed to convince the king to surrender even at the last moment. He could see that he, along with the rest of the kingdom was headed for doom. He hadn't abandoned his position and deserted the army because he loved his birthplace, his family, and his job. More than that, he remembered a much different king, one who ruled magnificently and with an iron fist, it was before that incident when young prince Rolof passed away.
"It's not all over. I will have one chance. One chance to kill that arrogant prince of Kylaf and maybe that will be enough. Or at least it would be my revenge!" Jorg muttered to himself with conviction, a steely gaze in his reddened eyes.
(Scene 3)
Raymond was standing on a level field. It was flat ground with no signs of any vegetation. The sun was shining down majestically. The ground was devoid of any snow from the long, harsh winter. There were no clouds in sight and there also wasn't a sign of any wind blowing. The isolated, distant calls of the birds were the only sounds in an otherwise silent atmosphere.
He raised his head to gaze up at the steep boundary wall built outside the city. It was red in color and it seemed to him that not much maintenance work had been done on them for quite some time. The plaster on the wall had come off at numerous places, and the wall itself had crumbled at one particular place and the inside of the city was visible from there.
"Tch… And it is supposed to be the royal capital…" Raymond clicked his tongue at the apparent poor condition of the city walls. It was hard for him to believe that the royal family had managed to let the condition deteriorate to this extent. Furthermore, there weren't any signs of any patchwork being performed at the last minute.
"I guess; I should have known…" He sighed, not for the royal family but for the common populace who will be the ones to suffer after the conclusion of the war, and from what he could gather they weren't much better off right now.
Though Raymond despised this purposeless war, the whims of the spoilt prince of Kylaf, he had made peace with the fact that he was powerless to change it. He still was just a 3* awakened with no rights to talk at the table.
"Such a tragedy, really," he sighed again. They were right on the outskirts of the royal capital and there wasn't even a sign of opposition from the local forces. It didn't make any sense to him. All through their march through the heart of the kingdom they, the allied army, didn't have to put up with more than a few tiny skirmishes. If not for the jeers of the few brave ones from the frightened and worried locals it was as if they had been marching through a ghost town.
The one major roadblock for them was the fortress right near the border of Tristinia and Beltran. However, when the scouts brought back the intelligence that the fortress had been abandoned and there were only a few awakened still left inside it, it came as a shock to everyone. Even then, they didn't have to fight, the warriors inside the fortress surrendered on their own initiative. Maybe because the difference in numbers was so huge, that the morale of Tristinian warriors was at an all-time low, such that they didn't even have the heart to raise their weapons.
It was actually great news for the alliance. There was no bloodshed and no need to look after the injured; apart from the few bloodthirsty individuals who were eager to get a taste of battle, there weren't many issues.
"Any time now!" Raymond tightened his grip on his sword. The commander of the allied forces, Robert Muller, the marshal of the Gervaland Kingdom, had already given the sign. They were about to start their attack.
Raymond looked to his right to look at the visage of the Healer-in-chief, Ingrid. She was covered in armor from her breasts to her legs. The backside of hers was covered by the leather garb. She looked all ready to dive into the thick of it. However, all this couldn't hide her innate beauty, Raymond thought to himself.
To his left side was the captain of the infantry division, Johan Olson, Ingrid's cousin. He had a sharp look glint in his eyes, ready to lead the charge. Since they were attacking the walls of the city there wasn't any use of cavalry. The horses they had ridden on were tied to the back, taken care of by the logistics division.
The war when awakened warriors got involved was much different from the ones where they didn't take part. After all, a single awakened can on his own change the entire course of the battlefield, especially the ones who had offensive elements like fire or lightning.
Also, the awakened didn't really have use of being in cavalry units; as their burst speeds were much greater than average horses. So apart from using them for conserving stamina, Raymond hadn't heard or seen an awakened riding on a horse and fighting. It was a bit redundant and interfered with the proper use of their power. Though he had heard of awakened warriors who could tame magical beasts and use them for this purpose, now however it was a thing of the past.

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