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Chapter Six-

Severus pulled back, gasping for air. He wanted to kiss her again, as if Genera le Sarte had suddenly become air, but he didn’t.

“What?” she asked, her own breath quick and shallow. Her mouth was swollen, her lips red.

“I think I shouldn’t have done that,” Severus said, his hands running up Genera’s arms. “Perhaps it was a bad idea; this is a bad idea.”

“I’m all for bad ideas,” the young woman replied. She laced her hands closer about his neck, her fingers trailing under his hair. He was never so aware of the base of his spine, or the way a woman’s touch could go straight to his gut then at that moment.

“Be a gentlemen if you want,” Genera said on, nuzzling his neck, her voice moist and warm against his skin, “but I’m not letting you walk away.”

“...Genera.”

“Please,” she breathed, resting her mouth against the pulse of his heart. She pressed her chest against his chest, her knees against against his knees. She swayed with him, against hi. Severus felt dizzy, he clutched at her to keep his balance.

“I’m not asking for much.” Severus tried remained still, his fingers clamped around her wrists.

“You’re asking for everything,” he said, letting his head fall back on his spine. He closed his eyes tight, feeling sunlight on his eyelids.

Genera moved then, shifting her body away from him a little. He could feel her hot needling gaze on his face even as cool air rushed in between them. “No, I’m not,” she insisted. “I don’t want you to love me, or promise me more time than just this afternoon.”

“Genera – ”

“I’ve been so cold for so long Severus,” she said, pressing her face against his throat. “I don’t wanna be cold, not right now.”

Severus very gently but firmly stepped out of the circle of Genera’s arms. She let them fall to her sides. With back straight she sat on her knees watching him with wide plain blue eyes from her perch on the rock.

“I’m glad you kissed me,” she said after a moment, almost defiantly. “It felt good to be kissed like that.”

“Like what?”

Why? Why did you ask?

Fool.

Don’t answer.

Like what...


“Like it mattered,” she said, her voice breaking. He could see her eyes become bright with tears. “Like it was the best and only thing that mattered. No one’s ever kissed me like that before.”

“I’ve never...kissed a woman--like you before. I’m... I’m in love with another woman Genera, I couldn’t ever want you that way.”

“I don’t want to be wanted that way,” she shrugged.

She doesn’t want it to mean more than it does.

What does it mean any way?


“Severus.”

He shook his head.

"Please."

And so he  took her to bed.

He held her hand as he guided her up to the castle and slowed his pace as they climbed the stairs to the Great Hall and squeezed her hand when they pasted the Sytherin dormitories. He didn’t let himself think any further than the next step, the sensation of her fingers interlaced with his. It was better than close, the way she brushed her thumb across his finger, better than real when he looked up at him, giving him a watery smile.

And when he’d locked the door to his bedroom and she began carefully unbuttoning her blouse because his fingers were too clumsy and worried, it was better than anything he’d imagined, because it was happening and he could taste it, touch it.

He did touch her, gingerly and reverently. His skimmed his fingers down along the fine line of her cheek, rested his palm against her heart, kissed her mouth and learned the line of her hip, the hollow at the back of her knee.

But Genera le Sarte was perhaps an impatient lover, ever ready in her need. She almost shied away from his gentleness, and demanded something else instead; his strength, his own need and maybe...yes, maybe his anger as well.

She said she’s been cold. I know cold well.

Afterwards she didn’t cling to him, but sprawled across him. Severus wanted to gather her up, keep her skin on his for as long as possible but Genera clearly didn’t want or desire it. She trembled across him, but didn’t ask him to cover her worried chills.
He could taste her in his finger tips, hear her on his lips.

I’m infected. Are all woman like this? A terrible thing that digs deep down never to be removed fully?

I won’t forget, I don’t think I could.


“Could I stay?” she said after a long while, “maybe tonight? Its late any way,” she added, rolling over onto her back, her head turned toward him. “No sense in going now.”

“Are you hungry?”

“Yeah, starving.”

“I’ll get something,” he said, rolling away from her. He sat on the edge of the bed for a moment, away from her nakedness but completely aware of his. He rested his elbows on his thighs, head hung down so that his hair was like a curtain, effectively cutting out Genera le Sarte.

He didn’t sniff the hot wet that trailed down his cheek and pooled at the corners of his mouth, but licked the tears away, tasting his own salt like it was the most bitter gall. And then he laughed. It seemed ridiuclious, he stood up swiftly, the air cold on his skin and laughed.

"What?" she asked from the bed, pulling the rumbled bed clothes to her. "What is it?"

Severus shook his head, he kept his back to her as he pulled on an old dressing gown, roughly scrubbing his face clean with his hands. The laughter died him in as swiftly as it had bloomed, and finally he turned and look at her.

"I didn't expect this."

Genera gave him a cool, if not familair, smile. "And I did?" she asked with a bare shouldered shrug.

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