The Changing Tide
A 17 year old Shouta lay in his bed, arms crossed behind his head as he stared up at the ceiling thoughtfully. As usual, thoughts of his exuberant, not to mention well endowed, familiar consumed his mind. He turned his head to look over at her, because of course she was snuggled up next to him in his bed as usual. At least she was wearing a vest and some shorts rather than her birthday suit. He suddenly wondered if she was comfortable wearing that…she wasn't fond of clothing after all. He smiled at her peaceful face and soft, steady breaths. She didn't need sleep so it was rare that he caught her actually sleeping. He exhaled softly in frustration as the organ below his waist twitched to life, already semi erect.
This was his dilemma.
He wasn't even looking at her body, just her face…that gorgeous face…and he wanted her. It wasn't just a simple matter of lust. Oh he knew what lust entailed. During his younger years he was almost always paralysed with it when she was close in proximity. He swore his face would have remained a permanent shade of tomato red from the number of times her ample assets made him blush. He didn't know what to do with those feelings back then, but he knew it was most definitely lust. No, this was something else entirely. As the years went by and his mind and body further matured, he became less resistant to her displays of affection. Not physically, but mentally he welcomed every overly affectionate embrace. He had hit a tremendous growth spurt at 14. He was tall and lean; his hair now cropped short, his bangs still covering a bit of his forehead. This combined with his obvious intelligence and maturity never failed to attract female attention. Yet the one female he wanted still saw him as a child.
At 15 years of age when his friends excitedly told him that one of the most beautiful girls in school was rumoured to like him he'd shrugged it off. He was already thinking of returning home curious to see how his carefree companion had spent her day. He was sure his friends thought he was crazy…and probably weird…for never going on dates. When he'd let it slip to Lucoa that yet another girl was interested in him, she insisted that he at least ask this one out stating that it would help to alleviate his shyness. He'd rolled his eyes as she squeezed him in a tight hug, his head then reaching just above her bosom, declaring his shyness 'so adorable'. He hadn't been the shy little boy she'd first encountered for a long time now.
So he'd gone on the ridiculous date, already knowing it would be a one-time deal. Mari was a nice girl, but she wasn't the girl he wanted to be sitting opposite on the terrace of the cosy cafe. Speaking of the devil, he had to hide his amusement every time he looked behind Mari only to have Lucoa (who was hiding behind a nearby plant) flash him two enthusiastic thumbs up in encouragement. The ex-goddess was confused as to why he'd opted not to take Mari on a second date but nodded in understanding when he stated she wasn't the one for him.
Things had pretty much remained the same between them for the next two years. He had developed immensely as a mage. His was quite advanced now and of course he shared his mastery of every new spell and ability with Lucoa. He was grateful that he came from a long line of mages, it had allowed him to summon the person he wanted to be with forever. The only problem was finding a way to ascertain whether she reciprocated his feelings. Sure she teased him constantly about giving him her body but did her feelings go any deeper? The wheels began turning in his head as he formulated a plan.
Nodding slightly 15 minutes later, a sly grin broke out on his face. He turned his head slightly to look at his unsuspecting victim only to find her staring back at him.
"What's wrong? Can't sleep? Let me help!" Lucoa cheerfully suggested, pulling his head into her generous cleavage.
"Lucoa!" he gasped, his ability to breathe temporarily compromised until he turned his head to the side.
He half-heartedly protested, all the while enjoying her attentions. He couldn't wait to see her reaction to what he had in store for her tomorrow.
The next night…
Shouta stretched his limbs as he finished reading a hefty volume on higher level enchantments. He'd already finished his school assignments and his revision for the University entrance exams. He had no doubt he would qualify for *Todai, but tonight he had another goal in mind. He closed his books and headed over to the bathroom, a smirk forming on his lips. It was now or never.
He was a creature of habit and he always took a bath around 8 pm. His busty familiar always took advantage of this knowledge and joined him in the tub soon after.
He removed his clothing and neatly set them on the tiled counter after starting to fill the tub. Even after the bath was ready he casually leaned against the counter, waiting. Five minutes later sure enough…
"Shouta!" Lucoa smiled widely as she happily entered the bathroom, a short white towel hanging on to her curves for dear life. She stopped abruptly, noticing that he wasn't yet in the tub but next to it, fully nude.
He hid a grin as her eyes trailed down his lean stomach and narrow hips to the part of him that was steadily rising, before flicking back up to his face, a red stain blooming on her cheeks.
Ah…so he could make her blush too.
"Hey Lucoa, are you ok?" he asked innocently.
"Y-yes of course!" she smiled brightly.
"Good," he smiled stepping into the tub, "well aren't you coming in?"
For the first time ever he saw her hesitate in this situation. She actually gripped the towel tighter around her body. If nothing else revealed her nervousness, that action confirmed it. His confidence in his plan grew even more.
"It's really warm and relaxing." He coaxed, leaning back against the tub's smooth surface, never taking his intense gaze away from her. In his younger years he usually looked away out of embarrassment. After getting quite used to her exhibitionist habit he usually looked away (when he could) to preserve some of her modesty (which she could care less about), being the gentleman that he was. He didn't intend to be a gentleman tonight.
Lucoa nodded and dropped the towel, her hands quickly moving to cover her breasts and the region between her shapely thighs. She NEVER covered herself. This was going better than he hoped.
She quickly climbed into the tub and settled in opposite him instead of invading his personal space like she usually did.
"Are you feeling ok?" she suddenly blurted out.
"Fine." He nonchalantly replied, "You're awfully far away, come closer, I'll wash your back."
She actually narrowed her eyes in suspicion. She was definitely uncomfortable, now that she was getting a taste of her own medicine.
He chuckled and began moving over to her. Remarkably, she began retreating from him until her back was pressed against the end of the tub.
"Am I making you uncomfortable Lucoa?" he asked, moving in even closer. Her lips parted in surprise as he pulled her raised knees apart and knelt between her thighs, their bodies pressed flush against each other. There was no way she couldn't feel exactly how much he desired her.
"Wha…what are you doing?" she whispered, swallowing thickly as he cupped a bounteous breast in one hand.
"Do I really have to explain? You've been in existence far longer than I have, surely you know about the birds and the bees." He teased, watching her eyes glaze over as his palm glided over one tight, pink nipple below the water's surface.
"Ahhh!…I ah…I have to go!" she half moaned half gasped out, climbing hurriedly out of the tub.
"Careful, remember it's slippery next to the…"
Shouta winced as Lucoa slipped on the tiled floor right next to the bath mat, landing hard on her hands and knees. They always avoided that spot after baths. In her haste to leave she'd totally forgotten about it. She was completely flustered.
"Lucoa, are you ok?" he asked worriedly, moving to get out and help her. His worry over rode his pleasure at seeing her in such an overtly sexual position.
"Fine, fine." She insisted scrambling to her feet, "I'll see you later okay!"
Shouta settled back into the water and laughed anxiously, his nerves finally rising to the surface. His plan had gone much better than he expected. There was no way she'd look at him the same after tonight. Whether that was a good or bad thing, only time would tell.
"Help meeee!" Lucoa wailed into the living room rug.
"Would you calm down already!" Tohru frowned, "You're so melodramatic. You come on to him all the time so what's the problem?"
"The problem," Kobayashi smirked, "is that Shouta's the aggressor now, and she doesn't know how to handle it. The tables have officially turned."
As Lucoa sniffed, Kobayashi took pity on the ex-goddess.
"Lucoa, you like him don't you?" Kobayashi asked.
"Yes! But he's…changed."
"Well geez did ya think he'd be a kid forever!?" Tohru huffed with a roll of her eyes.
"No!" Lucoa denied, but a hint of a blush betrayed her guilt.
"Listen Lucoa, I don't know how in the world you haven't noticed, but he's not a child anymore. Your relationship was going to change at some point. He's always liked you; he just didn't know what the heck to do with you. Seems like he's figured it out and he's made his intentions pretty clear." Kobayashi concluded.
"Seems like the ball's in your court now Lucoa." Tohru smirked at her long-time friend and fellow dragon.
"I guess it is." Lucoa said softly, a hint of a blush returning to her face. It wasn't that she was unaware that he had grown up. His voice had changed, she now had to look up at him as he had long ago surpassed her in height and his blushes were far less frequent. She just didn't like uncertainty and change. So she ignored the inevitable, hoping that the elephant in the room that was their changing relationship could be avoided. What if he didn't want her in his life anymore? She cared for him far too much to face that depressing possibility. After tonight though, it seemed like he wanted anything but to end their relationship. He actually wanted to take it to the next level…
She suddenly sprang up and waved cheerfully at her friends, "Thanks for the advice guys I really appreciate it!"
They stared after her as she hurried out.
"Do you think she'll be okay?" Tohru asked.
"I think she'll be fine." Kobayashi smiled.
Shouta was just about to fall asleep when he felt the bed dip beside him. He rolled unto his back and smiled at his familiar.
"Hey, I'm glad you're back, are you alright?" he asked motioning for her to come closer.
She did so without hesitation and lay on his chest, his arm hugging her close to his body.
"I'm fine. You just…shocked me." She admitted.
He laughed, "I bet. I had to do something to make you realise that I wasn't 10 years old anymore."
"I know that! I just…I guess I didn't want you to grow up and forget about me." She said softly.
He sat up and leaned over her, "I couldn't ever forget about you even if I tried Lucoa. I want to be with you forever."
"I want to be with you forever too." She smiled.
As he leaned down further to kiss her, Lucoa gently pressed two fingers to his lips.
He raised an eyebrow at her actions.
"You know that I'm immortal…" she said in a breathy whisper, "Time won't ever be the same for us and…"
"I don't care, I want you anyway I can have you, for as long as I can have you." He said firmly.
Tears began to pool in her eyes as she nodded happily. He closed the distance between them and finally kissed his loyal companion for the first time, feeling her arms wrap around his neck as they deepened the kiss.
Change wasn't something to be feared at all. One only needed the courage to embrace the tide.
Chapter 2: The Knight and The Goddess
Shouta is 19 about to turn 20 in this fic.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Shouta was in hell.
Hell was not fire and brimstone.
Hell was not the ominous pit of Tartarus.
Hell was not Dante's frigid ninth circle.
Hell was right here, at this damned pool party.
Shouta's mood grew darker by the minute as he watched his "friends" and mostly strangers enthusiastically surround his familiar, each trying to capture her attention with increasingly juvenile tactics.
Summer break was finally here and his second year at University of Tokyo had officially come to an end. Some friends from his Technology Management department had invited him to this "brain cooler" pool party in an upscale gated community where some of them rented apartments. The complex was quite close to his own studio apartment which was located in a private, chic townhouse owned by one of his father's business associates. Shouta had politely declined, as he usually did, but this time he'd made the mistake of leaving the flyer for the event on his study desk where his ever inquisitive significant other had spotted it. Had he just immediately thrown it out he wouldn't be here sulking in the sun like a petulant child with arms crossed peevishly over his blue and white beach shirt.
1 week earlier
Shouta groaned in exhaustion, resting his forehead against his Web Engineering and Business Modeling notes. Finals were almost over and his last exam was in three days. While that was a comforting thought, he was so sick of filling his head with Econometrics, Intellectual Property Management and Corporate Strategy (to name a few modules) that he just couldn't bring himself to fully concentrate on this last hurdle. His double major in Business and Information Technology was challenging but he knew it would serve him well after University.
His breath caught in his throat as soft, soothing fingers suddenly stroked through his hair and gently massaged his scalp. It felt like heaven.
"Lucoa?" he breathed, almost purring at the sensations her fingers triggered.
"How's my future CEO?" she chirped happily.
He sighed and sat up turning in his rotating desk chair to face her. She was wearing light blue jeans and a new strapless light pink top with long, flared sleeves.
"I'm just really tired." He smiled taking her hand and pulling her to sit snugly in his lap. While the thought of any physical contact with his well-endowed familiar often paralysed him with embarrassment as a boy, as a young adult he often felt bereft if she was any more than an arm's length away...like he was missing an extension of himself.
"Is this stuff hard?" she asked, leaning over the desk to peek at his notes.
"No, it's just a lot to go over in really a short space of time." He shrugged.
"You've been studying all day, the only break you took was for a quick lunch. Maybe you should relax for a bit." Lucoa frowned, her fingers absently toying with the short, soft hairs at his nape.
"Didn't you go to check out that new mall downtown with Tohru, how do you know what I've been doing?" he frowned before slightly rolling his eyes, "Never mind, you were spying on me from the mall."
"Ehhhh! Master, I would never!" Lucoa exclaimed, feigning innocence.
"Give it up, you've been doing it since I was a kid." He grinned fondly at the buxom blonde.
"Fine, I was checking up on you." she easily acquiesced, flashing him a sheepish grin before frowning again, "But I still think you should take a break. How about a nap? I could take one with you!" She offered with a dazzling smile, coyly shifting her shapely behind against his denim covered lap. He inhaled deeply as his body immediately responded with a rush of blood to his groin.
He gave her hips a quick squeeze in response, his eyes drifting over to the Queen sized bed that dominated the bedroom of his luxury studio. He was sorely tempted to give in to her not so subtle invitation.
"No, I need to study for a bit longer today and we'd only end up wearing each other out if we went to bed right now." He grinned.
"True." She shrugged, smiling mischievously as they exchanged a heated look, "But what better way to relieve stress?" She replied, pressing her ample breasts invitingly into his chest. She blinked slightly at the firmness of his pectorals. He'd begun a strict gym regimen in the 2nd semester of his second year and his previous lanky frame was bulking up deliciously in all the right places.
"I'll take you up on that tonight." He smiled, suggestively patting the rounded curve of her derrière.
She laughed merrily, "Alright fine, but when this exam is over you really need to unwind, this looks great!"
He scoffed as she enthusiastically held up a flyer for a pool party.
"No." he said firmly, leaving no room for argument, or so he thought.
"Come on it's just down the street. You hardly ever go to any social events and it's already the end of your second year."
"I resent that, I'm at club meetings every Tuesday and Thursday." He pointed out.
"Investment club doesn't count. I swear it's like taking extra classes." Lucoa frowned, remembering the intensive and mind- numbingly boring discussions about equity, debt, stocks and bonds the one time she'd accompanied him to a meeting. While she was absolutely impressed with Shouta's knowledge of financial matters, largely attributed to frequent discussions about such things with his father from a young age, she'd literally fallen asleep an hour into the session.
Shouta laughed, "No it's not. I've taken way more risks with my portfolio since I started in my first year and I'm seeing some really huge returns now. I'm going to run for club President next semester. It's tons of fun."
Lucoa looked unconvinced.
"How do you know you won't enjoy the pool party?"
"I know." He replied with conviction, "and you know that I hate crowds, loud music and generally wasting my time. Pool parties, or any party in general, usually means all of the above. "
Lucoa pouted slightly at his firm declaration. He was always so very…mature about everything, always had been since she'd met him that fateful night nine years ago. While she truly loved (and was honestly quite frequently aroused by) his unwavering sense of responsibility he often forgot to enjoy everything he'd worked so hard for and to simply enjoy life in general.
"Just this one party and if you hate it I'll never try to convince you to go to another one ever again. Deal?"
He narrowed his eyes at the challenge. They really did have different ideas of fun and he didn't particularly feel like compromising at the moment. He sighed as she stuck out her lush bottom lip in an even more exaggerated pout.
"Alright deal. I'll go, but you're coming with me." He stated. There was no way in hell he would suffer through this torment alone.
"Yay college party!" she cheered happily as Shouta rolled his eyes. She grinned and smacked a quick kiss to his lips before strolling off to the kitchen, "I'll make you a snack."
He really wished he'd never agreed to this party and he really, really wished that he'd left his familiar safely at home, far away from the hungry stares of his male faculty mates. She was downright resplendent in a one piece gold halter swimsuit that exposed her back, save for her long, ombré tipped hair, along with some generous (yet not quite nosebleed inducing) cleavage. A mid-thigh length shimmery white and gold wrap was tied around her waist. All in all it was probably one of her more modest outfits but like a moth to a brilliant golden flame ravenous stares tracked her every move. Even some of the men currently engaged in conversation with the other females in attendance stealthily observed her. He really couldn't blame them.
The hungry stares he was somewhat fine with, it was natural for men to look at attractive women and Lucoa was, indisputably, world class.
However, as soon as she'd moved from his side to scan the refreshment table on the other side of the pool, one rather eager man he'd noticed around campus sometimes eagerly approached her. He seemed to be offering to make her a cocktail but she smiled and politely declined. Shouta let out the breath he'd been unaware he was holding when Lucoa, having selected a few snacks from the table, turned to head back over to him. But some of the other men had apparently gained some courage after the first one had approached her and in literally ten seconds flat Lucoa was all but surrounded, looking adorably bemused.
His classmates were aware that Lucoa was his girlfriend (she was much, much more than that seemingly trivial title but that was the simplest way to introduce her). However, there were a lot of unfamiliar people at this party who probably didn't know (or really didn't care) that she was already involved with someone else.
This happened more times than he could count over the years. Men literally fell at the ex-goddess's feet…and it was his own personal hell. He would always feel a twinge of jealousy at times like that, indeed at times just like this, but after they'd finally made it official two years ago, it wasn't just jealousy that reared its ugly head but pure possessiveness. Sure, Lucoa was an immortal, astoundingly powerful being who had existed for centuries. She was more than capable of fending off a few overly eager admirers. His own magical abilities, advanced though they might be compared to other mages, could not compare to that of an Aztec deity. That however, didn't change his feelings towards her…she was his. His to protect, his to care for, his to love. What irritated him most was that most men only saw her as a sexual object; they had no idea that she was insightful, kind, caring, charismatic, loyal, funny, flirty, sometimes assertive to the point of being pushy and every other wonderful trait that made her Lucoa. They didn't know her like he knew her, could never love her like he loved her.
He'd never envisioned himself as the stereotypical "jealous boyfriend" but when one of the men motioned towards the pool and reached out to take her hand he found himself at her side in the blink of an eye.
Lucoa's eyes grew wide, her intriguing heterochromia on full display as Shouta tightly held the man's wrist before his hand could make contact with any part of Lucoa.
"Don't you dare touch her." He growled between clenched teeth. Bright rays of the summer sun illuminated the strands of his windswept hair, setting it off like a blazing amethyst wildfire… a reflection of the violent inferno raging inside of him.
He must have looked frightful because without question the startled man immediately stepped back as soon as Shouta released the offending limb.
"Lucoa, are you ready to leave?" he asked with forced calm, not quite meeting her eyes.
"Uhh…" Still stunned Lucoa quickly collected herself and managed a high pitched, "Yes!"
Shouta nodded and they rounded the pool and exited the apartment complex. The short walk back to his apartment was silent. Shouta wasn't sure he could adequately explain his overreaction and so he dug in the pocket of his black shorts to get the house keys and pretended not to notice the questioning looks Lucoa aimed in his direction.
As they entered the apartment he threw his bag on his desk chair and sank unto the bed with a sigh.
Lucoa stood hesitantly in the bedroom doorway, gripping the doorframe.
"I'm sorry." She suddenly apologised.
Shouta looked up, his confusion evident on his face.
"Sorry? For what?" he asked, needing some clarification. He was clearly the one who should be apologising for not keeping his emotions in check and making a scene.
"I embarrassed you didn't I?" she sighed.
When he only blinked, even more confused, she blurted out.
"The swimsuit was too much, I guess I still haven't perfected the whole modesty thing, obviously, and I really attracted a lot of unwanted attention…" she babbled.
"Stop." Shouta immediately commanded. There was no way he'd let her shoulder any responsibility for his actions.
He stood and walked up to her slowly and deliberately, "Look at me."
Lucoa obediently raised her head to look up into his stern, handsome face, her eyes slowly roving over his sharp jawline and cheekbones to focus on his piercing violet eyes. Those eyes softened a second before he uttered his next words.
"You are perfect." He whispered sincerely.
Lucoa gazed up at him lovingly, her lips trembling slightly before a smile formed, brightening her features.
"It doesn't matter what you wear, people are going to stare." He chuckled, "It's just…"
He rubbed the back of his neck, about to bare a bit of his soul to her and feeling like he was a blushing, uncertain 10 year old all over again.
"I don't like it when guys fawn all over you. I never liked it. I get…really jealous and…I don't know…I just sort of see red and get this urge to punch something, which isn't like me at all." He frowned deeply.
He saw the flicker of understanding in Lucoa's eyes and continued.
"I know I shouldn't let my emotions get the best of me like that and I really shouldn't be so possessive of you, but…"
"I like it."
Shouta stopped mid-sentence, looking at Lucoa in surprise, "You like what?"
"I like that you're possessive of me." She smiled up at him happily.
"Oh…well…really?" He blinked, a bit taken aback and still a bit unconvinced. That wasn't the response he'd been expecting at all.
"It's just that…in my entire life…" Lucoa paused and swallowed almost nervously, as if literally having flashbacks of her entire existence, "no one has ever stood up for me the way you do."
His eyes widened at that and he was a bit taken aback at how very vulnerable she looked in this moment. He wanted to pull her into the safety of his arms and keep her there forever. Surely she'd had family and friends who'd loved and protected her, right? He suddenly recalled that she was an 'ex- goddess'…perhaps now was the time to dig deeper into the circumstances surrounding that…
He was about to ask her to explain her heart wrenching confession when she suddenly smirked and moved closer to him, pressing her voluptuous body against his solid frame.
"Anyway, you are my Master, from the moment we met I've always been yours." She smiled slyly. If he had somehow missed the sexual undertone of the statement, her hands moving up to unbutton his shirt confirmed it.
…well maybe they could talk about her past later.
She shrieked as he easily scooped her up bridal style and lightly tossed her on the roomy bed. Oh yes, those gym sessions were definitely paying off. She giggled as he quickly stripped of his shirt and crawled unto the bed, moving between her soft thighs and leaning over her so that their faces were barely an inch apart.
"You're not my possession Lucoa. I just want to protect you. I'm your Master, but as much you belong to me, you have to know that I also belong to you." He smiled. Her mouth formed a small 'o' in wonder at his statement and he took the opportunity to slide his tongue teasingly between her lips.
She immediately opened her mouth granting him access to explore as much as he wanted.
As they parted for breath, both slightly panting after a rather heated kiss, she lightly sucked on his lower lip before abruptly stating,
The haze of lust in Shouta's eyes rapidly cleared as her words registered.
"I…what? When?" he frowned, leaning up slightly.
"At the pool party. You teleported from the other side of the pool over to me right before you grabbed that guy's hand. You really didn't realise it." She chuckled in amazement, "I knew you'd be freaking out if you did."
"Did anyone notice?" he asked anxiously with wide, concerned eyes.
"No, definitely not, you did it so suddenly. I imagine there'd have been more of an uproar if people had realised what happened." She smiled.
He laughed as she pulled him back down and showered his face and neck with affectionate open mouthed kisses.
"I can't believe you were so angry that you lost control like that. My Master is truly my knight in shining armour." She grinned, winking at him.
Shouta smiled tenderly down at her. For a long time he'd felt so inadequate. Never good enough, never confident enough, never strong enough to truly be a worthy Master. To be worthy of Lucoa. He'd always tried to mask those internal insecurities with bravado…but if she truly believed that he was her knight, he would damn well do his best to live up to the honour.
"Your knight huh?" He smirked, quickly undoing the knot of her halter swimsuit while simultaneously pulling aside the crotch to sink his index finger deep into her hot, moist core. She gasped at the sudden intrusion, raising her hips with a quiet moan to encourage him further. Her breasts bounced freely, their stiff pink peaks beckoning his tongue like a Siren's song. His mouth went dry in anticipation at the alluring sight she presented beneath him.
"I like that." He confirmed, only partly referring to his new moniker as he quickly discarded his black shorts and resumed their torrid make out session.
This knight was about to ravish his goddess.
Author's Note: SPOILERS! So stop reading this note if you haven't read Chapter 66 yet.
First let me apologise that this wasn't a lemon as some people requested. I still intend to write one when life permits me the time to do so but this was just something I quickly wrote based off some inspiration from chapter 66!
It was great to finally see some of Shouta's magical ability. The way he stood up for Lucoa was just the sweetest scene ever, he may be young but what girl wouldn't kill to have a guy defend her like that and in such an epic way? Feel free to correct me but I also think this was the first time Lucoa called Shouta "Master", she usually calls him "Shouta kun" so her level of respect for him as a mage definitely grew in this chapter.
I have to also admit that I did not realise Lucoa's dragon form was so freaking ENORMOUS! She's like 10x Tohru if not larger…she made Tohru look like a baby dragon. I mean, Tohru's whole body wasn't even the size of Lucoa's head. In episode 14, the OVA, Lucoa explained that their human bodies are an ideal conversion of their existence as dragons, so that would explain Lucoa's huge boobs loll.
Need I even mention all the sexual innuendo between Shouta and Lucoa at the end loll, I mean, when Tohru said, 'Are they talking about +18 things now?' I cracked up loll.
Thanks for reading!