‘I love you, Mo Yuan.’
Like the gently falling snowflakes, Bai Qian’s lips were meltingly soft. He could lose himself in these kisses, inhaling her breath, filling his lungs with her sweet air.
When Bai Qian started to sway, Mo Yuan broke the kiss to clutch her to him, berating himself for forgetting in that self-indulgent moment that she had only just recovered no matter how well she appeared. If he did not take care, even these lightest of touches risked igniting low-banked fires within him perhaps best kept waiting a little while yet.
Bai Qian laid her head upon his shoulder. Cupping the side of her face, Mo Yuan caught the sparkle of snow crystals in her warm chestnut eyes once more.
“I could take my ease forever, Qian Qian, gazing into the beautiful windows of your soul,” Mo Yuan whispered softly. “Your shining eyes are most mesmerizing.” Her answering smile reflected the beauty of her spirit even more.
The hood of her cloak fell back when Bai Qian tilted her face to the sky, her eyelids drifting closed as snowflakes caressed her cheeks.
Mo Yuan lightly brushed his chin on her temple which earned him another of her smiles.
“Let me take you back to the Fox Den before Zhe Yan fireballs back here to scold me for making you walk too long…” Mo Yuan frowned. “…or your father comes to get you. Shall we walk together here again tomorrow?”
With a tired nod, Bai Qian was the one to make him smile now when she lifted a tail to drape over his shoulder.
And with that, Mo Yuan cloud-jumped them to the Fox Den.
In the weeks that followed, Bai Qian’s time with Mo Yuan was wonderfully carefree, filled with earnest conversation and soft laughter. He had taken the opportunity to escort her through all of Kunlun temple, describing its every area in detail to her. She’d had the occasion to meet many of the students during these tours.
When the weather permitted, Mo Yuan continued to lead her on leisurely strolls of the Mountain as well.
Mo Yuan was so easy to be with, to talk to, to listen to, especially during their outdoor walks. Then there was the way he kept holding her hand inside her mitten, the light touch of his bristly chin on her cheeks and her brow, the warmth of his body when he would tuck her under his cloak….
It was a crisp, cloudless afternoon on this day. Bai Qian could tell by the icy dryness of the air and the feel of the winter sun radiating off the snow.
The curve and steepness of the path they were on felt familiar to her. It took a moment for Bai Qian to recognize why.
“We are at the northern garden.”
“Yes, that’s right.” Mo Yuan shook his head. “One day, Qian Qian, I must get you to give a lesson to students on orientation.”
Give a lesson at Kunlun temple school?! Her? Bai Qian was flattered, and intimidated, at the same time. But her thoughts shifted quickly.
The northern garden.
Where the silver moon orchid grew.
“I heard my father and Zhe Yan talking about how the orchid doesn’t glow anymore. Is it true, Mo Yuan?”
“It’s no longer the same orchid Zhe Yan observed, Qian Qian. It’s true that one never regained its glow after he touched it the last time.”
Mo Yuan took hold of her elbow and brought them to a stop.
“When the lunar cycle began anew, a fresh orchid grew from the roots of the previous one that withered and vanished as they all do at the new moon. The new orchid is the first of any before it not to glow at all.”
Bai Qian’s tails flicked up and down behind her.
“What is it, Qian Qian?” Mo Yuan had become familiar with her nervous habit whenever she was hesitant about something.
“The garden… it must be covered over with snow, yes? All the gardens on the mountain must be now.”
“Some are, some aren’t,” Mo Yuan answered. “My Second and Tenth oversee the care and maintenance of Kunlun’s gardens. They have apprentices do the rounds clearing those gardens whose flora must be kept exposed to the sky yearlong. The northern garden here where the silver moon orchid resides is one.”
Bai Qian pressed her lips together a moment. “You know, I never did get the chance that day, busy as I was spraining my ankle and groping your beard to, umm…” She felt his hand squeeze hers lightly inside their shared mitten. “Mo Yuan, I’m very curious about it. May I touch the orchid for myself?”
Mo Yuan’s hand whisked out of the mitten and Bai Qian let out a startled squeak when he scooped her up into his arms. “Hold on, there’s a snowbank,” he said matter-of-factly.
Trudging forward, Mo Yuan carried her over it.
Her boots sank lightly in what smelled like freshly turned soil when he put her down. Magic was undoubtedly being used to keep the garden’s ground from freezing.
“The new orchid is just ahead of you, Qian Qian. You likely won’t smell its fragrance given it’s winter.” That’s right. Of spiced snow… Bai Qian remembered Mo Yuan’s description of it the first time she’d been here.
“If you reach down with your right hand about a distance of half the length of your arm,” Mo Yuan directed, “you’ll touch it.”
Removing her mitten, Bai Qian extended her hand the distance he said. Something thin and smooth and finely shaped touched her fingertips.
“This is one of its petals.”
“Yes,” Mo Yuan confirmed.
Bai Qian traced the petal’s fragile contour to where it joined with another. She did so most carefully, fearful one would break. The curves and texture of the orchid’s petals were not so different from those of a peach blossom, albeit larger and perhaps more delicate. She sensed no magical energy from the flower at all.
“Do you think it true, Mo Yuan,” Bai Qian’s fingers trailed down the orchid’s stem, “that your mother created this flower for you so its light would help you someday?”
The question seemed to lay heavy in the air as Mo Yuan did not immediately respond, his words only coming after a slow intake of breath.
“My father once told me,” Mo Yuan began in a voice she couldn’t decipher, “that all the flowers here on Kunlun had been my mother’s. The silver moon orchid was supposedly her favourite. That is all I know.”
Bai Qian thought of her own mother.
“I think your mother loved you very much, Mo Yuan, to have created this flower especially for you.” Bai Qian stood up and turned to him. “I believe your mother hadn’t wanted you to ever be afraid of the dark, be it within you, or out.”
She reached up to hug him. “As I would never want you to be either.”
Mo Yuan’s arms embraced her tight.
“Mo Yuan, I’m perfectly fine. I’m quite able to climb over a snowbank.”
The fur of her fox tails had all grown back. The hyper sensitivity at the tips was gone and all was back to normal for her.
But he ignored her, again, and carried her over this latest snowbank to get to the path leading to some of Da Bao’s favourite bird feeders deeper in the forest. Why not use his magic to tamp the bank down like he did the paths?
Could it be Mo Yuan enjoyed doing this to her?
Piqued, Bai Qian purposely dug her trailing tails into the wet snow to make it more difficult for him. The strong winter sunlight of the day had melted the snow cover just enough to create a good resistance.
Their walks were always the highlight of her days but lately, a certain frustration grew inside Bai Qian. For Mo Yuan continued to treat her with nothing but utmost delicacy and gentle care. As if she were a fragile petal that could easily break.
In all her life, Bai Qian had never been this patient. She’d been making a valiant effort to be so for him. But peach pits! Enough was enough. It had come to the point where she’d begun entertaining thoughts of shoving the Grandmaster of Snowbanks into one whenever he scooped her up despite her protests.
If she didn’t take matters into her own hands, their gentle, easy walks would go on for goodness knows how long. She was going to have to give that lesson in orientation, wasn’t she, but a very different one than what Mo Yuan had likely had in mind.
Bai Qian withdrew her dragging tail tips from the snow once he put her down with a puff of exertion.
Yes, the snow had indeed melted to an effective consistency.
An effective… sticky… consistency.
As they walked along the peaceful forest path, Bai Qian bobbed and dipped her tails behind her, discreetly scooping up snow with each motion; squeezing and shaping the scoopfuls with each individual tail.
Soon, nine tail tips were curled around nine perfectly formed snowballs.
It was time for the lesson to begin.
“There’s a strange bird call coming from up ahead. I’ve never heard one like that before. Do you know what bird it is?”
Mo Yuan advanced about a half dozen steps while she waited in place. The sound of his leather and fur cloak swishing as he turned back to her was Bai Qian’s cue.
Yes! A direct hit.
There was a cough and some spitting. A mouthful of snow? A perfect hit!
Then came a growl…
…followed by a sharp snap.
Bai Qian didn’t dare hesitate now.
She launched her volley and smirked.
There was a distinct swoosh of displaced air and snow.
Bai Qian spun to her left. Where had Mo Yuan dived? That’s what she heard just now, right?
And what had that snapping been?
She should have planned this better. Mo Yuan could dive behind trees but she’d be forced to give up some shooting tails to guide her after him or else remain where she was and hold her ground. Bai Qian chose the latter.
Tilting her head, she focused her hearing. Wherever Mo Yuan hid, he was being most silent.
Time slowed to a crawl. A breeze picked up.
A branch above her creaked.
Squealing with laughter, Bai Qian threw herself forward, her tails scooping and shooting snow upwards as fast as she could while she rolled. The creaking of branches above kept pace with her.
Mo Yuan was pursuing her from the tree canopy!
Bai Qian bolted upright with a gasp when a soft snowball struck her at the base of her neck and crumbled down the gap between her fallen hood and her skin. Gah! The icy tickle down her back distracted her.
And in that moment, the lesson was concluded by the pair of strong arms that captured her.
Strange bird call?
Mo Yuan heard nothing unusual. But given Bai Qian’s hearing he did not wish to presume. Curious to know what it was she’d heard, he walked a short distance ahead before turning to ask if she still–
The snowball clipped him just off the chin. Powdery spray exploded straight up his nose and into his mouth. His teeth stung from the icy mouthful which he coughed and spat out.
Bai Qian had truly caught him off guard. He’d been so relaxed and at ease during their walks together, enjoying the rare luxury of having his defences down.
And now the God of War had been taken out…
…by a snowball.
Oh, but no. This could not go unanswered.
A feral smile played on his lips as Mo Yuan growled his challenge. He spied the curled tips of fox tails rising high. In a flash, a long icicle that hung off a nearby branch snapped off with a magical summons to his hand, and not a second too soon! Spinning in the air, Mo Yuan smashed through the volley of snowballs with his impromptu ice sword.
A satisfied smirk appeared on his lovely fox’s face.
Bai Qian believed she’d struck him again.
Mo Yuan’s blood hummed in his veins.
Diving behind a tree, he watched Bai Qian tilt and turn her head, obviously trying to pinpoint his whereabouts. What would she choose to do now? He could see but two courses of action available to her… hold her ground and bombard him with more snowballs if he came into range again, or try to flush him out which would mean having to sacrifice a few tails of ammunition to be able to navigate through the trees.
Stirring up the air currents to mask his sounds, Mo Yuan dropped the icicle and jumped upward to catch a thick branch overhead, swinging himself up onto it. Nimbly he leapt from thick branch to thick branch until he arrived just above her, but this last branch betrayed him, creaking loud enough to be heard over the breeze. Bai Qian’s head snapped up and she threw herself forward.
Abandoning all efforts to conceal his movements, he chased after her when she attempted to get away under cover of a renewed offense. Laughing and rolling as wildly as she was, all of Bai Qian’s throws missed their mark. Scooping up snow quickly off a branch with his hands, Mo Yuan aimed for the back of Bai Qian’s neck.
And when his fleeing quarry was momentarily stunned, the Dragon plunged downward to capture her.
All thoughts of snowballs and laughter fled.
Finding herself pinned back against the trunk of a tree, the heat of Mo Yuan’s rigid body pressed up against hers was a shocking contrast to the frozen bark chilling her back.
The tree trunk was so cold…
…and her dragon so warm.
“Mo Yuan,” Bai Qian said softly. “I really am back to myself. Did I not just prove it to you?” Slowly, cautiously, she curled all her tails around his back to pull him more tightly against her. “My tails and I are just fine.”
For a split second there was an intense burst of what felt like a scorching ray of sunlight upon her face. Mo Yuan’s eyes flashing gold upon her? Zhe Yan had told her they did that when the Dragon’s essence was stirred. She would do well to remember this feeling from now on.
“Bai Qian.” Mo Yuan’s voice was rough. He fell silent, his breathing becoming deeper, more forceful. Was he scenting her desire? Her arousal? There came a long, sustained growl.
Yes, he was.
“Are you sure?” he whispered hoarsely.
She wrapped her tails more snugly about him, forcing one between them to trail slowly down… past his sternum… past his abdomen… below his pelvis… letting it slide at a certain point back and forth.
Emboldened by the explosive jolt of his heartbeat, Bai Qian mustered her courage to reach up and lay her palms upon Mo Yuan’s leather and fur-clad chest. Her hands rose and fell with his heavy draws of air as she slid them up to his neck to cup his jaw.
Rising on her toes, Bai Qian guided herself thus to poise her partially open mouth just before his. Mo Yuan’s lips must have parted for she could taste his breaths.
When Mo Yuan had kissed her and made love to her at the Fox Den, his breath had been honeyed and mellow. But despite the spiking heat from his body, Mo Yuan’s breaths now tasted like a cool, fresh wind. It would seem a dragon’s spirit did take in the currents of air about him.
Mo Yuan shuddered as she continued to hover her mouth before his. Could it be the little white nine-tailed fox was able to exert power over the great Golden Dragon, the mighty God of War after all? Bai Qian felt a rush of giddiness at the thought.
“Gu Gu is feeling chilled,” she whispered into his mouth without touching his lips. “Won’t Gu Gu’s Dragon warm her?”
She flicked her tongue upon his jaw line. And when she let her fox instincts guide her and lightly nipped him in the same place, the instant feel of cloud mist around her made her the one to shudder now.
The hearth fire in Mo Yuan’s chamber roared to life.
Bai Qian’s boots were gently taken off then the knot of her cloak untied. When the cloak began to slip off her shoulders, she tucked away her tails for it to fall unencumbered to the floor.
She reached forward to remove Mo Yuan’s cloak now, and started, for her hands met only the heated skin of a bare, muscled chest.
“I cannot see as well as you, Bai Qian,” Mo Yuan murmured low as his hands encompassed hers to press them against him harder. “This dragon had to find his way in the dark last time and could not take his fill of you with his eyes. Would you allow me the full light of day so I may rely as best I can on my sight, limited as it is?”
“Yes,” Bai Qian answered, a little breathless.
A loud bang came from the direction of the window. The window shutters flinging open to allow in the daylight? The winter breeze that blew inside the chamber confirmed it.
But the warmth of the fire and the warmth of her dragon kept Bai Qian from shivering as Mo Yuan continued to slowly undress her.
Waves of Mo Yuan’s cultivation flowed over Bai Qian as they lay on their sides on his bed.
His palm smoothed up her bare thigh to curve round her bottom, cupping it with a gentle squeeze as his tongue slowly danced with hers.
He withdrew from her mouth to glide his tongue down her throat.
Bai Qian closed her eyes as the deliciously chilled kiss of the outside air along the moist trail he left made her shiver with ripples of goosebumps. Mo Yuan’s warm mouth enclosed and suckled one of her breasts, and his agile hands and deft fingers kept gliding over the dips and curves of her body.
When the tip of his finger sank into her sensitive navel to trace its rim, Mo Yuan pushed her onto her back with a nudge to her hip. The throbbing wetness between her legs surged as her body tightened in anticipation.
“Touch your breasts for me, Qian Qian.” The hunger in Mo Yuan’s voice made her tremble.
Closing her hands about her breasts, she pinched and rolled her taut nipples between her fingers. Mo Yuan’s hair swept lower over her stomach, and Bai Qian began to pant.
He slid his hands down past the sides of her waist to the inside of her legs, gently slipping them between her thighs to ease them apart.
Bai Qian’s shallow breaths hitched when Mo Yuan’s long, slender fingers delved between her wet folds and spread them; his hair now brushing against the sensitive skin of her inner thighs as he lowered his head.
The feel of Mo Yuan’s breath against her exposed, throbbing clit made Bai Qian moan. But when his tongue flicked across, then flattened against her swollen nub while he inserted a finger inside of her, her hands fell from her breasts and she gasped from the electric jolt that coursed through her.
Mo Yuan’s finger slowly sliding in and out while his tongue licked and lathed her clit and her folds soon had Bai Qian writhing in throes of rapture. His forearm settled across her hips to hold her in place while he added another finger, and then another; pumping them gradually in and out at first, then faster and faster.
Bai Qian cried out as she was swiftly brought to the edge of climax, then over.
Mo Yuan’s head lifted away when her back arched sharply with her powerful orgasm, his fingers plunging relentlessly into her to prolong her pleasure as she cried out even more.
Like playing a beautiful song upon the guqin, Mo Yuan’s palms and fingers glided along Bai Qian’s silken lengths, absorbing the feel of vibrations, coaxing out sounds of pleasure as he made love to her with his hands.
He watched her chest rise and fall in fluid refrain as she fondled her breasts, mounting to a crescendo of shivers when he slid his finger, then fingers, into her.
Synchronizing the strokes of his tongue with those of his hands, he pressed firmly; spreading above, between, below, in crisp brisk strokes.
Bai Qian was breathtaking to behold in her passion. Her creamy smooth skin aglow with a lustre of fine perspiration, the delicate curve of her collarbone framing beautifully flushed, full-ripened breasts; their taut nipples darkened with arousal. Her slender waist and smooth stomach above a softly tufted mound with its glistening curls at the junction of her shapely legs…
Mo Yuan had never thought or felt in this way before.
Bai Qian, what have I become because of you? But he already knew.
He’d become a musician gifted by her as his muse. A warrior empowered by the charge of his passion for her. A god enraptured by the pure beauty of her soul. A teacher inspired by his desire to learn all of her.
A man. Simply Mo Yuan. Blessed by his love for this woman.
He was a dragon who now had a peach blossom flower for a heart.
A dragon who desperately wished to immerse himself in the warmly lit waters of Bai Qian’s body.
When her breathing had steadied and her eyes opened, Mo Yuan returned to lay along her side.
He slid his hand under her upper knee when she turned to face him anew to raise her leg over his hip… opening her to him.
“Would you bring out your tails for me, Qian Qian?” he whispered low in her ear. “I find them most exquisite to touch as well.” And one by one, nine lush fox tails emerged from behind her to billow above them
Mo Yuan reached round to rub the base of Bai Qian’s tails as he slowly entered her.
He loved the melody of expressions on her face. It was so beautiful how her every feeling and emotion played upon her lovely features. Bai Qian cried out when he withdrew only to re-enter, so sensitive she was to his touch now. When her leg slid up his hip to wrap about his waist, he pushed into her more deeply
Legs intertwined, the brilliant cadence of their combined harmony made the Dragon soar…
…amidst the storm of rushing rhythms,
lightning crackled along his spine.
A percussive beating of his hips
with his fox meeting his every stroke.
The spiking of her peach blossom scent drove him,
as he played upon her sinuous strength harder.
His instrument swelling, lengthening within her,
until she sounded her highest pitch.
With wild and primal abandon Mo Yuan took Bai Qian, marking her with his essence.
Tuning his soul to hers.
It was late the following morning when Mo Yuan awoke with Bai Qian tucked under his side. A lush blanket of fox tails covered them both. Lightly clasping a tail, he ran his fingers through its fur before bringing it against his face to inhale its peach blossom scent.
“Hmm?” She sleepily nuzzled her cheek into his neck.
“What time of day is your father in his best mood?”
He felt her tense beneath him, all traces of sleep gone.
“When I bring you back to the Fox Den today, I plan to stay a while longer. I wish to speak with the Fox King about an important matter.”
Bai Qian slipped out from beneath his side and propped herself onto an elbow.
“Lord Mo Yuan, this is quite the breach of protocol. Shouldn’t an important matter be addressed with the Queen of Qing Qiu first?” She tried, and failed, to sound affronted.
Mo Yuan propped himself onto an elbow as well. “I believe I have already done so, no? Though perhaps not in so many spoken words.” He gently took her free hand to place over his heart.
“Hmm, I cannot deny that, Lord Mo Yuan. However, I feel I must protect my own vested interests in what I believe this important matter to concern. Therefore, I wish to revisit some of the details of our deliberated treatise from before. Of this I must insist.”
A smiling Mo Yuan pulled Bai Qian into his arms.
“As you wish… my Lady of Kunlun.”
⇛ Next part: 43(第四十三章) The Lady of Kunlun
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