As the sun began to set over a long cold day in the Wandering Isle, Matthias collected his freshly chopped wood. Nina had tasked him with warming up their home, and he was happy to oblige. She was in their house now, preparing dinner for their family.
Matthias’ favorite part of the day was sitting by the fire, holding his wife in his arms. He also enjoyed the delighted giggles and kisses he received as he entered through the front door of their modest home.
“Papa!” Asa, their five year old daughter jumped onto his leg. Matthias laughed, dropping the wood near the door to pick her up.
“My beautiful daughter,” he kissed her cheek. “Have you been good for your mama?”
“Yes, papa,” Asa squeezed his cheeks. “I wasn’t naughty this time. It was Madlen who was naughty.”
“Madlen,” Matthias gasped, walking over to where their six month old daughter was lying on her stomach. He bent down, moving Asa to climb onto his back. “Madlen, I heard you were misbehaving.”
Madlen gurgled, and stuck her hand in her mouth. Reaching a large hand to gently caress her head, Matthias heard the sound of his wife in the kitchen. “Come, little one, let’s check on mama.”
He let Madlen stay lying on her stomach and walked over with Asa on his back to Nina. She had flour covering her face, and her hair was a mess. Leaning against the counter, Matthias admired her.
“The things I do for you,” Nina rolled her eyes. “It’s supposed to be your turn cooking.”
“I had to chop the wood,” he raised a hand to defend himself. “A man can only do so much.”
Nina leveled him with a nasty stare. “I hope you don’t forget that I am not one of your Fjerdan women that lives to cook and clean for their husband.”
Matthias moved closer to her, testing the waters. “I would never forget that.” He slid a hand around her waist, pulling her against him. She turned her head, looking out the window at something. Asa reached over his shoulder and patted her mother’s head gently.
“Don’t be upset at papa,” she said sweetly. “He promises to make dinner every night for the next month!”
“Oh does he now?” Nina grinned, winking at Asa. “Well, if you say it, then it must be the truth. Your father is wrapped around this tiny finger of yours.”
Asa wiggled on his back to get down, and he bent his legs to set her on the floor. She scampered off to go play with Madlen while they finished up dinner. Seeing that Nina was still testy about something, he brought his hand to her chin, gently pulling her face to look at him.
“Nothing,” she said, her voice a bit too perky. He could always tell when Nina was upset — her cheeks turned red and her voice went up two octaves.
“Something is bothering you,” Matthias stroked her cheek, then pulled her to rest her head against his solid chest. “I’m sorry I didn’t get dinner cooked tonight. Like Asa said, I’ll do it for the next month.”
“It’s not that,” Nina smiled weakly. “I just woke up from a nap,” she sniffed. Nina peered up into his face, her eyes fraught with worry. “I had the most horrible dream.”
Matthias sensed the fear in her and kissed her lips to soothe her. She relaxed slightly against him and wrapped both arms around his waist. “What was the dream, Älskling?”
Nina was quiet, which was unusual for her. Tilting her head to look up at him, a tear formed in the corner of her eye. “It was a nightmare, really. Horrible. Something happened to you… and I couldn’t save you.”
“I died in your dream?”
Nodding, Nina hugged him tightly. He settled his hands on the small of her back and let his chin rest on the top of head. He had had dreams similar to that before. Either Nina died and he was helpless or his daughters were in danger and Matthias could do nothing. It was paralyzing, to feel so useless. Even waking from that dream was not a comfort, because it lingered for days. Matthias knew this feeling well, and didn’t want Nina to be afraid.
“I’m not going anywhere,” Matthias smoothed her hair. “You can’t get rid of me that easily.”
“Promise,” Nina tilted her head up. “Promise that we will stay together forever. I don’t know what I would do if I lost you.”
“Nor I,” Matthias ran his thumb lightly over her bottom lip. “Are the girls safe to play on their own for five minutes?”
Nina looked behind him at their daughters playing on the rug. Asa was showing Madlen her new dolls that Matthias had made for them. “What did you have in mind?”
“Come,” he pulled her hand and led her down the hall and into their bedroom. He was overcome with desire for her, and needed to act on it. Matthias wanted, no needed, Nina to feel safe and protected.
“The dinner will get cold,” Nina giggled as he shut the door behind them.
“As much as I don’t want to admit it,” Matthias said as he trailed his hands along Nina’s skirts, pushing them up. “This won’t take very long.”
“Oh, Matthias,” Nina narrowed her eyes. “Are you beguiling me with your wicked Fjerdan ways?”
His hands slid further, touching that place between her thighs and she moaned, leaning against him. Her back was pressed against the wall of their bedroom, her thighs parted.
“I learned from the best,” he kissed her deeply, his tongue opening her lips. Matthias was usually more reserved when it came to pleasing his wife, at least, he usually waited until the children went to sleep. But he needed her, he craved her.
Nina slid her hands along his chest and up into his hair, tugging roughly as he kissed her. She sighed against his mouth as he pulled his trousers down around his hips. Taking hold of him, Nina guided his cock between her thighs, leaning back against the wall. Matthias held up her skirts, and watched as she stroked him before he thrust forward in one hard movement.
Briefly, he stilled inside of her, savoring the feeling of her warmth. Her body rolled against his and Matthias began to pound into her, making sure to protect her head from hitting the wall behind her. Nina became undone, her hands clawing at his back, urging him closer. He loved when she was this way, wild and without abandon.
Matthias lifted her up, angling her hips so he could push deeper. His thumb pressed firmly on her clit, moving in steady circles and Nina gasped against his mouth, her breath hot on his cheek.
“I love you,” he groaned, wanting to wrap her body as tightly around him as possible.
“I love you, you big lump of muscle,” Nina laughed as he kissed her neck, and then rammed home and home again. Her legs were limp, and the only thing holding her up with his hands. Matthias was her protector, her comfort. With him, she knew she would be safe, and she would do everything in her power to watch over him.
With one final thrust, Matthias let go and his body shook against hers. She followed him over the edge, whispering his name and clinging to his body.
He wanted to lay down and hold her forever, but their children were waiting. Their beautiful blonde headed daughters, the light of his life. Matthias pulled down Nina’s skirts and rearranged them.
“I will set the table,” he kissed her nose. “Take some time to recover from my ravishing.”
Nina swatted him on the arm, laughing as he walked out of the room.
Suddenly, he was surrounded in darkness and Matthias let out a scream.
Matthias was dreaming again. Dreaming of her.
It always started that way. Their house in the country, their children, and Nina always there to love him. Sometimes, they had one child, sometimes more, but the dreams were always the same. He was there with her, and they were happy.
Things might have been different if she hadn’t betrayed him and broken his trust. But he was stuck here in hellgate, alone, and he knew that she would not come for him.
His heart was pounding, and he was curled up into himself to ward off the dream. He ached for it, longed for it, and wanted it so desperately. Tears ran down his cheeks and he hated himself for it. He should hate her, but when he closed his eyes, he could only picture her smile, or her laugh and Matthias was broken.
Rolling onto his other side, Matthias tried to shut out all his thoughts.
But she remained.
The Drüsje was always there, always with him. And would be until his dying days.