Jester watched on as Yasha, her fearsome and slowly healing barbarian, egged on her opponent in this underground arena. The brief bit of hope she’d had that Yasha was starting to feel more like herself fades, as each hit Yasha takes seems to bring a wider grin to the aasimar’s face, one that makes Jester feel uneasy. The tiefling sips half-heartedly at her drink, realizing that she still has more work to do, between Beau, Fjord, and Yasha needing physical healing and her knowing she has to talk to Yasha tonight.
At the final blow, Yasha falls and the Mighty Nein seem to be equal parts disbelief and elation, thrilled it’s over and they don’t have to watch it anymore but also terrified for their friend. The group moves to head toward the arena, to help Yasha to her feet and get her a drink. Jester hesitates, steeling herself to not scold her troubled girlfriend until they’re somewhere private. But as Yasha snaps back into the conscious world, the first thing she asks about is Jester, and Jester’s annoyance melts.
“Yasha,” the tiefling starts, resting a healing hand on the taller woman’s bruised cheek, “Anything else I need to take a look at?” The magic washes over Yasha, who closes her eyes at the sensation, before they open with a suggestive twinkle gleaming in them.
“Oh there’s a few things you can take a look at. If you catch my drift,” the aasimar mumbles, a slight slur to her words from the drinks and, no doubt, the fight. The Nein laughs, Beau whooping and slapping Yasha’s back, but Jester’s cheeks flush against her better judgment.
“Well not with this many witnesses we don’t,” Jester responds, her tail whipping behind to stop Veth’s undoubtedly lewd comment before it begins. Shaking her head, she presses a quick kiss to her girlfriend’s cheek, who grins and seems to puff up at the attention, before turning to the group.
“I think I’m done for the night, I can’t do any more healing. So I think I’ll take this one,” her hand wrapping around Yasha’s, “And head back to our place. Anyone else?” When the rest of the party shrugs, seeming to want to enjoy the nightlife a bit longer, Jester nods and slowly pulls her girlfriend into standing. The taller woman leans on her heavily, but Jester doesn’t mind the weight. “Well, make more-or-less good choices. See you all when you get back.”
The two strong women work their way through the crowd and slowly up and out of the underground arena. Jester and Yasha talk softly amongst themselves as they meander on the street, until Jester starts to feel a tiredness in her muscles. Realizing she might not be able to carry her girlfriend back, she tells Yasha to keep a look out for someone who might be willing to let them borrow a cart. Eventually, as they stoll on, Jester sights a person unloading a cart. Approaching them, they’re a dwarf, with short greying blonde hair.
“Excuse me, might I ask you a question?” Jester asks, pausing to lean Yasha against the side of the cart. “I was wondering if you wouldn’t mind renting us your cart so I could get my friend home.” The dwarf turns at the words, looking up at the two weary travellers.
“Well, I suppose I could for, five silver. But I need it back tonight,” the low voice doesn’t reveal a gender to Jester. She eyes the dwarf closely, observing the way they stroke an intricately braided beard, though short it is in length for such a style. Digging into her pouch, she retrieves five silver and drops it into the waiting dwarf’s hand.
“Thank you, uh, I’m sorry I didn’t catch your name? We’re Jester and Yasha, from the Mighty Nein.” Jester’s hand extends for a shake, to which the dwarf clasps it firmly with a sly grin.
“I know who you are, young lass. The name’s Dev, it’s a pleasure to meet you in person. But I think we’ll have time to talk more another time, your tall friend there is almost fading.” A small laugh leaves Dev, who tips an imaginary hat as they wish her good night, before turning and removing the last boxes from the cart.
Jester waves at them happily, before helping Yasha into the bench, hopping beside her to take the horses’ reins. Waving at Dev, Jester urges the horses forward, turning to look at Yasha, who smiles dazedly at her.
“Yasha, we really should talk about what happened tonight,” Jester trails off, her eyes straying to the cobbled road she leads the horses down. The cart gently rattles over bumps and divots, but Yasha doesn’t seem to notice.
“Can we talk about it tomorrow? I think I need some time for myself to think it all over,” the aasimar says, her voice sounding more steady and she straightens up a bit at the serious tone.
“I can respect that, I suppose. But I was worried about you and I still am, so please don’t take too long,” Jester tries to sound a bit teasing, in asking Yasha to hurry, but her genuine worry seems to seep into her words too heavily. A pale hand rests over her sapphire pair on the reins.
“Your concern is understood, my sweet. It warms me to the core, but I must feel myself out first.” Yasha’s tone is firm, though full of affection, and Jester relaxes a bit at the second confirmation that Yasha will talk to her when she’s ready. “For now, can’t we just enjoy this little bit of alone time we have?”
Jester smiles, leaning into the woman beside her, before she nods, a happy hum leaving her. The two enjoy the relative quiet of the city at night, enjoying the comfortable silence between them as they slowly make their way back to their lodgings. The moonlight bathes in the streets in beautiful silver and white, and Jester quietly sneaks glances at the beautiful aasimar that glows with ethereal beauty beside her. Her cheeks warm as Yasha’s eyes catch hers, they smile fondly at each other for a while, before a sudden bump reminds Jester she needs to be looking at the road. Hurriedly her head turns forward again as she chuckles nervously, the silence falling around them for a beat after.
“If you weren’t driving, I’d kiss you senseless,” The words had been circling Jester’s mind, but Yasha’s mouth speaks them. Jester’s eyes cut to the aasimar, the moonlight bringing out the angelic features of the woman even more so than usual. The tiefling checks their surroundings before pulling the cart over into a mostly deserted alley.
“Not driving anymore.” Her voice is soft, that special kind of fondness and feistiness that she knows Yasha loves, and the tone Jester reserves just for her. Her hand falls from the reins onto Yasha’s knee, a blue thumb rubbing against leather before she leans towards me. Our mouths meet and the kiss isn’t as coordinated as she’d like, Yasha’s teeth meeting hers. They pull back, the tiefling letting out another nervous chuckle before Yasha pulls her back into another urgent kiss.
They spend quite a bit of time, making out like teenagers in the cart, Jester climbing into Yasha’s lap with pale fingers hurriedly pulling blue hair free from its bindings. They settle into a rhythm quickly, though the pace is slow, fingers wandering to sensitive places and caressing skin. Nothing’s removed, they still seem to realize they’re in public, but Jester starts to get impatient.
“Yasha, hmm, uh, Yasha!” Jester shouts a little, startling the aasimar away from her current assault on her neck. The two toned eyes are worried that a line’s been crossed, before Jester presses a soft kiss between them. “No, love, just realized we should probably get back and continue thi-” Jester’s eyes had looked over Yasha’s head and saw a small cat, eyes aglow sitting at the opening of the alleyway. Her eyes squinted and the cat seemed to hurriedly back around the wall. “We’re not alone. I think Caleb sent Frumpkin after us.”
Yasha’s shoulders had tensed for a fight but she instead let out a laughing sigh, resting her forehead against Jester’s chin. The tiefling presses a resigned kiss to her girlfriend’s forehead, before climbing out of her embrace and settling back, taking the horses’ reins and moving the cart forward. As they near the entrance of the alley, Yasha nor Jester catch sight of Caleb’s fae cat, and Yasha takes the reins briefly so Jester can send Fjord a message.
“Fjord, please tell Caleb thank you for volunteering to return the cart I had to rent to get Yasha home. Take your time returning home,” Jester says, Yasha chuckling a little at the tiefling’s words. Returning the reins to the cleric, the two strong women cuddle into each other for the remaining trip.
Upon arrival, Jester tears a page out from her journal and sticks a dick-drawing-covered note to it reading, “Mighty Nein, Caleb must return this to the lovely dwarf Dev in the market square tonight! Dev knows who we are, so hopefully it shouldn't take too long to find them. Traveller go with you.”
The next morning, when the group reconvenes, Caleb is hesitant to see Jester. But when Jester comes down to breakfast, looking love-drunk and wearing marks of her evening, the tiefling waves at him and presses a kiss to his cheek, “Thank you for returning the cart!” The tiefling sits besides Beau and talks to her animatedly, as if nothing is amiss.
Confused but relieved at not being in trouble with Jester, Caleb reads from his book and continues his meal. Later, when Yasha comes down to breakfast, wearing bruises from war and love, Caleb realizes why Jester’s let bygones be bygones. Caleb nods gratefully at Yasha, who sits beside him as she eats.
The aasimar wraps an arm around his shoulders and briefly squeezes him in a half hug, lowering her voice as she says, “I told Jester you just sent Frumpkin after us to make sure we arrived safely. It took some convincing of course, but the time you all took to return the cart helped buy you some time.” She chuckles before patting the Zemnian’s shoulder gently, releasing him from her hold as she goes back to her breakfast.
“Well I suppose I should thank you then? Though I’ll bet you’ve been well rewarded already,” Caleb jokes softly. The Nein falls silent, all turning to look at the bookish man. Yasha smiles at him, before he asks, “What? What’re you all staring at?”
Veth looks overwhelmed with emotions as she answers, “You made a joke, Caleb. We’re all so proud of you!” Caleb scoffs as the rest of the group cheers, laughing goodnaturedly.
“BUT, to answer your question, Caleb!” Jester breaks through the din, the group turning to her as she stands, walking around to Yasha and draping her arms over the taller woman’s shoulders. “Yasha has been well-rewarded already.” The group busts out laughing, Caleb and Yasha’s face alight with blushes for different reasons. Jester presses a kiss to both their cheeks, first Caleb and then Yasha, before pulling Yasha into a deeper kiss. The Nein jeer and tell them to go back to their room. To which, Jester pulls Yasha up and leads her back upstairs to choked laughter and whoops from their friends.
Yasha follows Jester willingly, somehow bashful despite her brazen joking with Caleb. Jester, pulling the woman into their room, closes the door and locks it behind her. “Let them think you’re getting lucky again. But you and I are going to have that talk,” Jester says, her hands squeezing Yasha’s pair as she pulls the aasimar to the bed. The tiefling sits, looking up at Yasha, and Yasha starts to pace.
“Well, I did some thinking on it, after you fell asleep,” Yasha smiles at Jester, leaning down to press a kiss to her forehead. “I think the reason I reacted, or didn’t react, that way to the fight last night was because...it was a punishment.” There’s a silence that hangs between the couple before Yasha continues, “After everything I’d done, the way I felt I failed you all, failed myself, I needed to get beaten, I needed to lose. If that makes sense? It felt like I needed a reset, being forced down to zero and having the opportunity to start again.” Yasha stops her pacing, turning to look out the window at the city, bustling in the morning light.
Jester waits a moment before approaching the taller woman, standing beside her to look at the view. Her hand snakes down to hold Yasha’s, fingers intertwining as she looks down at their joined hands before speaking, “I think I get what you were doing. It doesn’t mean I still won’t worry about you and I’m going to ask you to not scare me like that again.” Jester looks up into mismatched eyes, finding them already looking at her sadly, but she shakes her head. “No, don’t be sad. I’m allowed to worry about you, just like you’re allowed to worry about me. But I think the important thing is that you continue to talk to me about this. Don’t fight alone.” Jester starts to tear up a little, leaning into the aasimar’s arms, each finding security in the strong embrace.
The couple stands there for a while, comforting each other silently, before Yasha breaks the silence. “I am never alone with the Nein, with you. I am always fighting with help,” she wipes away Jester’s tear tracks, “But I will do better to share my words, my feelings with you. I swear.” Yasha seals the promise with a soft kiss to Jester’s lips, who returns its softness in kind, the barbarian's healing slowly beginning.