Amani, Ibrahim


Ibrahim uses his folk-healer skills to help Amani relax enough to sleep. And also they explore the idea of putting a name to their relationship.

Backdated; nudity, mild sexual themes


It is evening on the 22nd day of the 11th month of the 12th turn of the 12th pass.


The Magician's Study, Southern Weyr

OOC Date 05 Jan 2018 06:00


amani_default.jpg ibrahim_default.jpg

“In the meantime, I’ll do whatever you need — to relax you.” — Ibrahim

The Magician's Study

A short flight of steps leads up to the entrance to this queen's weyr, an ornate metal gate swinging open with barely a squeak to permit entry into the short, candle-lit tunnel beyond. Although it may be on the smaller, more snug side, the weyr is beautifully furnished. The four-poster bed has a plump mattress, and the fabric draped from the wooden bars bears a distinctly Zingari flair in red and gold, some with discreetly glinting and elegantly embroidered design work present upon close inspection. It also allows for some privacy if arranged just so, the gauzy lightness of it lending the room a slightly ethereal quality. The writing desk provides plenty of workspace without taking up too much of the corner it's placed in and matches the pale wood of the bed, illuminated by a pair of hanging glow baskets. A set of elegant glass pens and ink pots serves as the highlight of the space, glinting in the light as though a hidden magic might reside in each crystalline stem. The comfortable chair tucked under the desk is upholstered with a pale brown fabric. A small wardrobe in a similar wood has been squeezed into one corner of the weyr, trying not to take up what remains of the floor space. There is a contrastingly rustic chest sitting beside it, almost begging one to ask what mysteries it might hold. A small private necessary is available off the back of the cavern, pristine and tidy, with a sparkling clean pool and plenty of shelves holding several generously-sized towels in various jewel tones and other toiletries to boot.

Evening has come, and duties are done for the day: time to indulge in the pleasures of one's own making — to release the tensions of the day and settle in with company and good times. Ibrahim has taken the chance that Amani and Zymuraith might want company tonight and has made his way to her weyr, the distance crossed through the rain as if it didn't exist for him, a mere nuisance to be shrugged off as par for the course of the Southern continent. There are bigger worries on his mind tonight.

Amani has the small hearth in her cozy weyr up and going, despite the heat and humidity that generally accompanies Southern’s spring. But when one needs to boil water, there’s really no other way, and she’s not going to cross out to the living caverns just for a cup of tea this evening. Aside from that, this particular concoction is what the Weyrhealer had given her, and it may just cause her to fall over asleep without much warning. All the more reason to stay at home.

Naturally, she’s also hoping that Ibrahim will come by. She does hope for his company most evenings. The trouble is, she just hasn’t been the most companionable person in the evenings as of late, always seeming busy or returning so worn that she just goes straight to bed, sleep or no. She’s hoping this new medicine will change things for the better. This is also one of the calmer evenings she’s had in some time, so all in all, the atmosphere in her weyr tonight isn’t fraught.

Wish: granted! Ibrahim is there, calling out softly, “Amani?” That would be his ‘hopeful’ tone, lilting and warm. She's been in his mind all day, now he knows she hasn't been sleeping well; perhaps it's nothing, but still, no intimate friend in his right mind would ignore the possibility of lending a shoulder and listening ear. He climbs the stairs, steps further into the weyr, listening for her affirmative.

“I’m here, Ibra,” Amani answers with a smile, though doesn’t step away from the hearth. “Just making sure I don’t burn anything down.” Which is unlikely; she’s been making fires for Turns and cooking for herself just as long, so managing a tea kettle is child’s play, certainly. She really just wants to get him to come in further. He’ll find her pouring steaming water into a mug, a simple robe of indigo silk all that drapes her frame, making it clear she has no intentions of going anywhere else this evening.

Ibrahim will track his way across the weyr, now, making his way to Amani with the sure-footed confidence of a hunter. When he reaches her, he gently smoothes her hair, dropping a gentle kiss to the top of her head. “I doubt you’d burn anything down,” he laughs playfully. “Well, unless it was that damn brownrider who got sent back to weyrlinghood. Him, you’d probably manage.” He still doesn’t like that guy: what grown man throws a girl under the bus to try and keep himself out of trouble? But whatever, F’kan’s no concern of his, thank Faranth; Amani’s far more interesting to him. “How’ve you been dealing with things, lately?” So many things! Even he — not especially sensitive to emotion — has been a bit unnerved by the loss of a queen to death; that unearthly keening sent him away from the Weyr for several days, unable to tolerate the air of deep grief.

“In which case, maybe I’m practicing,” Amani counters almost primly to Ibrahim’s first, slipping an arm around his waist as he places that kiss atop her head. At his question however, she lifts her head and sighs heavily, dark eyes tired and melancholy at the edges even now. “As best I can. There’s a lot of slack to be picked up between two goldriders.” Which she’d gotten a taste of before Bailey was gone and Mayte came along. “Most nights lately, it feels like I can’t quiet my mind, even with Zymuraith’s help. I can tell her anything, everything, let her ground me…but there’s always some other question or concern that lifts its head and hovers until I deal with it somehow…”
She shakes her head, pulling away from Ibrahim and rolling her shoulders before taking her tea from the mantle and pulling the ball out of it. “Hopefully this will help as well as Master Varden made it sound like it would.”

Ibrahim will let her go, slowly. What he wouldn’t give to lighten the load that now rests upon her shoulders; it’s rather too much, he feels, and keeps behind his teeth where it can’t get out and become a thorn of contention between them. Amani’s got no choice; this he knows. “Mmm, so am I.” He agrees with her assessment, and rubs absently at his chin, considering something with a furrowed brow. “Maybe a massage would help, as well. The more relaxed you are, the better, I think.” It may not send her to sleep to have her muscles tended to but it may very well encourage some form of release for the young and overworked goldrider. “And you can tell me all about this Mayte while you’re at it. Or… if there’s something else you want to talk about, whatever.”

Such is a goldrider’s lot: the responsibility is not asked for, but it must be borne. Thankfully, the queens don’t seem to be in the habit of choosing women who aren’t up to the task…but that doesn’t mean it’s easy, especially for those who Impress rather young. Amani glances back at Ibrahim concernedly at his first, though knows full well what he means. It’s all any of them can do. Her expression slowly morphs into smile, though, at his suggestion of a massage as she stirs some sweetener into her still-steaming cup. “If you’re offering,” she says, setting it on the mantle again and turning to him, “I’m not about to turn it down.” She slips her arms around him, pulling herself close against him and resting her head on his shoulder. “You always leave me more relaxed than I begin,” she murmurs, and touches her lips to his neck. “I’m sorry it hasn’t been such an easy thing lately.”

“I’m offering.” Ibrahim confirms with a little grin, cuddling her close against his chest. While he could wish it weren’t for so dire a reason that he’s been getting his hands all over her, still — it’s worth it, if it helps even a little bit. He just stands there for a moment, enjoying the feel of her body against him, soaking in the feeling of trust and mutual support “Don’t be sorry — it couldn’t be prevented.” The death, the absences, the fact that the Weyr is down to two goldriders, both young, one inexperienced. It’s part of life, to deal with the unexpected as well as one can. “We’ll muddle through, somehow, I think.” His smile is half-hidden in her hair. “Is this… something you want to talk about, Amani? I know you’re carrying a lot, here.”

“Me not relaxing couldn’t have been prevented?” Amani asks with a note of amusement. She’s not convinced she couldn’t have tried harder, feeling as though she couldn’t afford to relax. Now that things have settled, at least in the realm of where leadership stands, she believes she can start to again. “Southern’s muddled through worse than this, I’ve heard,” she notes, and catches Ibrahim’s hand, stepping back to retrieve her tea before pulling him toward the bed. She takes a sip that has her wrinkling her nose slightly in a manner that indicates she isn’t quite sure how she feels about it yet, then sets it down and sits, pulling to encourage him to come down with her. “I do want to talk. I just…don’t know what will come out, or how quickly,” she replies, worrying at her lower lip a bit, and peering up at Ibrahim somewhat helplessly. “Talking through what I’m dealing with still doesn’t come so easily, but I want it to.” Except with Zymuraith. There’s nothing hidden between dragon and rider when it comes to the Weyr.

With a chuckle, Ibrahim taps Amani’s nose. “Sheer impudence…” He mock-scolds, then steals a quick kiss of her. Convincing her that she doesn’t have to take on everything at once is possibly a losing battle, and one he understands. When one is given responsibility and takes it seriously, one tends to worry over even the things one cannot do anything about, like it or no. Those Healer teas are often very suspicious — any reasonable person would be dubious about them. Ibrahim gives a gentle smile for Amani’s expression, willingly drawn to the bed with her. Settled, he slips an arm around her shoulders, giving her a light squeeze of encouragement. “We’ve time, my Amani. You know I’ll always have an ear for however much you want to talk, or not.” He’s never seen the need to pressure her to do anything — she’ll either confide her worries or not, as it suits her. “In the meantime, I’ll do whatever you need — to relax you.” There’s a twinkle of mischief in his eye, now.

Amani summons up an expression of feigned hauteur with Ibrahim’s tease, upthrust chin and all, before he exacts that kiss from her. She smiles into, then snuggles up against his side when his arm goes around her shoulders. “I know you do,” she murmurs, and lifts her head to look at him, a hand rising to lay against his jaw. She smirks deeply in counter to that mischievous glint in his eye and leans closer in preface to a kiss of her own. “And I know you will.” The touch of her lips is sweetly appreciative and edged with desire, something she hasn’t let through quite as easily lately. “Speaking of which…where do you need me to be for this massage to happen?”

“Wherever’s comfortable for you.” Oh, but that desire is heady — and welcome, so welcome. His voice is hoarse with his answering desire, and yet he clamps firm control on it. He has to wait; that can come later, should Amani prove amorous. And yet, Ibrahim can’t help the gentle stroke of fingers down her throat, the slow, sensuous curve of his lips as he meets her gaze. “The fun part? I need you naked. Or mostly, anyway. It’s harder to work through clothing.” Oh! He’s managed to get ahold of a small vial of fragrant oil, for the sake of creating a wonderful experience for her. “Tell me if you like this…” He offers her the vial to smell.

Amani isn’t necessarily meaning to steer things toward sex, enjoying the ease of just flirting and teasing for now…though if it ends up there, she certainly won’t complain. And since Ibrahim says he needs her completely or mostly naked, she lets the anticipation of it start to warm low in her belly. The curve of her lips grows to match his as she takes another sip of her tea, her expression for it this time more speculative. Dark brows arch in surprise when he produces the vial, and the tea is set aside once more as she takes the oil to smell. “I do,” she says, a pensive expression coloring pretty features. “What is it? It seems…familiar, but I can’t put my finger on it.” She hands it back, then unties the sash of her robe, letting the slick fabric fall down her shoulders and back to pool around her hips before pushing it away and shifting so that she can lay on her stomach. There’s absolutely nothing else beneath…which of course makes things quite easy indeed.

“Lavender. It's one of the more soothing scents to be had.” Ibrahim takes a moment to admire her, to bask in the deepening trust between them, that Amani would consent to bare herself to him. How did he get so lucky? Once she's comfortable, he warms a generous handful of oil between his hands, preparing to go to work on her body in the hopes of relaxing her body, if not her mind. He starts at her shoulders, his fingers working gently — if firmly — at the muscles there. “If nothing else, most enjoy it because it's very subtle, and…” He laughs, softly. “Well. You see.”

Amani utters a small ‘ah’ of recognition. “I think…it’s something I used to smell every now and then around the healer’s tents in the Zingari.” More faint, perhaps, but a memorable and distinct scent nonetheless. Sweeping her hair off to one side over her shoulder, she settles, her head turned to one side and dark eyes fluttering shut. Goosebumps flare when Ibrahim’s fingers settle upon her, and a soft hum leaves her involuntarily as his touch firms to work at her muscles. “It is,” she notes softly. “Where did you get it? And how did you learn to do this?” She’s quite approving so far!

The wildlings have their secrets! “From the family Healer.” Or Ibrahim could just tell the absolute truth. After all, Amani’s hardly likely to go hunting them down to demand an explanation. “We all have to learn it, one way or another.” All that running around in the jungle leads to many, many sore muscles. He grins at the goosebumps rising on her skin, and lets his hands trail down her back, seeking muscles knotted with tension and working them into relaxation — carefully, slowly, thoroughly. “Besides, it’s a way to encourage intimacy between family, friends, and lovers.” A soft chuckle. “Wouldn’t you agree?”

Amani’s brows flicker upward at Ibrahim’s answer, and she smirks again. “For all they seem to have problems with you, your family seems willing enough to give you what you ask for, at least.” It’s a strange dichotomy to her mind, but if it works…

She shivers subtly as his hands travel downward, sighing as muscles that she hadn’t even known were tight suddenly give way. She grins at his last, chuckling drowsily in turn. “Definitely,” she replies, reflexively giving a long stretch beneath his hands. “Not that I think we particularly need much encouragement, but it’s a nice way to deepen things.”

It's the way of wildlings — at least among his family — to be conflicty like that. “When it suits them.” Ibrahim agrees affably, all too used to his family being funny acting types. Perhaps he's lived too long with such things to see it as strange now. Either way, he's enjoying the shared experience of the massage as much as Amani is; it's one small way to provide support for her. Her stretching beneath his hands gets a gentle smile from him as he searches out sore spots and tired muscles, encouraging relaxation. “Mmm, that's so true.”

And Amani does continue to relax, even if certain parts of her do the opposite in response to the intimacy of Ibrahim’s touch. Sighing deeply, she simply submits in silence to his ministrations for a long moment before a question drowsily leaves her lips, her eyes fluttering open to barely visible slits. “Ibra…what should I say we are, if someone happens to ask? I think I know…but I wanted to be sure you’re thinking the same thing.”

And cue confusion: Ibrahim had not expected to need a title for what they are to each other. His hands still on her back for a moment as he goes blank, searching for the proper word. And, tentative, he suggests, “Lovers?” It has the ring of truth to him, along with: “Friends…. we're several things, I think.” He isn't entirely sure there is a singular word to suit them.

“Well, yes…” Amani turns her head as much as she can to look over her shoulder at Ibrahim, a rather coyly tilted smile slanted his way. “‘Lovers’ would be the most elegant way to put it in my mind, but people don’t always take the word in the purest sense. Especially when it comes to weyrwomen.” Or female dragonriders period, in some cases. She folds an arm, propping her head up a bit. “I could say boyfriend, though that isn’t as lovely a word.” And indeed, she feels that what she has with him is worth as lovely a word as they can come up with. “Maybe I will just say lovers, if anyone asks.”

“Mm, yes, you're right about that.” It hasn't escaped Ibrahim’s notice that the trends in gossip skew to the negative for women having a choice in who they're intimate with. He finds the whole thing silly, yet keeps his own counsel, refusing to participate in the dragging of reputations through the mud for such parochial reasons. Her coy smile is met with a mischievous grin. “I wouldn't object to that.” Boyfriend, lover: whichever will cause Amani the least amount of aggravation works for him. He begins again with the massage, enjoying the feel of her beneath his hands.

Satisfied, Amani unfolds her arm to let her head rest, a gentle smile lingering on her lips as she lets her eyes fall shut again. She lets herself focus on the feel of his hands, though tries to think of what she might talk about. It’s a strange feeling, trying to decide; it would simply be rehashing things she’s already gone over at length with Zymuraith. It feels like enough, and perhaps it is…but as much as she loves her lifemate through to the very center of her being, hers is only one perspective, and a draconic one, at that.

Amani sighs without thinking about it, her eyelids fluttering subtly as they open to slits again. “I don’t think it really sunk in for me until it was suddenly just me and Mayte,” she says suddenly, the thought alighting on her tongue like a snowflake upon a stone, gentle but decisive. It leaves her lips without much thought at all. “Just how…uncommon we are. How valuable, how much sway we have…how closely we’re watched when it comes to the running of things. All because of the need to follow the dragon’s hierarchy, not our own. It doesn’t matter how much experience we have. Once we’re graduated, we have to be able to take it all on, because things can change in the blink of an eye, just like they did for Bailey. Here…and then gone.”
A faint shiver passes along her spine, the thought that triggers it not one she wishes to dwell upon. “I guess it’s little wonder that there are some who think the queens shouldn’t fly Threadfall. It would be more practical…but I’d feel like I was leashing Zymuraith somehow to do that, asking her to be what she’s not. I couldn’t do that to her. And…I want to fight. I’d always rather fight than sit and wait and worry…and not do my part to keep Thread off the heads of the people we all watch out for. The people I care about.”

Oh, what a fix she’s in: to suddenly be confronted with the reality of her new status in life, will-she, nil-she. There’s a great deal of sympathy for the shock of it there, a soft sigh for her confusion. And the memory of the grief for the loss of a gold and her rider still sends a shiver of apprehension through him: the thoughts that are never far from him are kept well buried where there’s no chance they may slip out into the open. A dragon bond he knows little of: the closest he’s come to it are his fair of firelizards, self-sufficient little creatures who appear and disappear when they will, though their affection is genuine and deep. All he can offer is a listening ear and a steady shoulder, and as many massages as she might wish while she talks to him of life in the Weyr as one of those rare and valuable jewels: Weyrwomen. “Mmm. Yeah — when there are so few, you become doubly important, and the harder it is to allow you much freedom, for fear of losing another. It sounds like it can be smothering, to be so guarded all your days.” Absently, he strokes a bit of hair behind her ear, a gentle, loving gesture meant to offer a hint of his care for her.

“The thing is…I don’t think I’ve done anything to test how guarded I might actually be,” Amani muses, turning her head to Ibrahim’s little tuck of her hair. “But I’m not going to let it make me paranoid. I’d rather keep forging ahead until I reach whatever wall is waiting for me than tiptoe around in fear of breaking a rule.” It’s never been her way, after all. She shifts a bit, the slight bending of a knee and an elbow giving her an angle that lets her see his face so that she might invite him to come lay with her with a simple look. “I do feel much more relaxed now. Thank you, Ibra.”

She's got the right attitude, that's for certain; living in fear of breaking rules can be disabling. Ibrahim will chuck what clothing he has on to join her in the bed, brushing his lips over her shoulder as he slips in behind her to draw her against his chest. The massage has had the desired effect, and a surprising one besides: he, too, has released some tension, worrying over how best to support her in what he knows to be a trying time for her.

“I don't suppose you could live your life hemmed in by paranoia — it's not healthy. And you're welcome.” He smiles softly and cuddles her for a moment just for fun. “I hope that, between the two of you, the Weyr will right itself. I've heard Mayte has experience as a senior.”

The little smile on Amani’s lips grows as she feels Ibrahim settle into the bed behind her, a soft, pleased hum vibrating in her throat as he pulls her against him. She shifts subtly, striving to fit every inch of her body that she possibly can back against all that she can feel of his body, warmed with the comfort he offers and a strong shot of the desire that always seems to simmer when he’s around…and to bubble over when she’s in his arms. “It already is,” she murmurs, and nods to his last. “For Igen and for Benden, so quite a bit of experience. I really am glad she’s here.” With a sigh, she lets her fingers stroke along one of his arms around her, her other hand dropping to graze her hand indulgently from his hip to his thigh.

“So am I.” With two of them, one well-versed in how to keep annoying overprotective men in their places — or so Ibrahim assumes, having never met her — it’s assured that Amani won’t basically be wrapped in bubble wrap and set on a shelf like some kind of ancient artifact. In the meantime, Ibrahim will enjoy getting her hands all over him, leaning into her caresses and snuggling right up close, ever so helpful in sealing their bodies into a comfortable whole. In this space, the hardships of the day slowly seep into nothingness: no giant, creepy bugs, no red smelly tide, no annoying family members expecting him to know everything about the new blue fungus — none of that. Instead, there’s just Amani, with her soft, soft skin and beautiful body and sharp, intelligent mind. He kisses her shoulder again, then rubs his stubbly cheek against her skin, grinning mischievously. “You smell wonderful.” There’s laughter in his husky voice as he kisses her shoulder again. “Almost edible.”

Amani will definitely hop herself right off that shelf if anyone tries to put her there - over and over again if need be. It’s greatly comforting to know that Ibrahim will not be one to try putting her there. She chuckles and squirms as he teases her with his stubble, though she clearly enjoys it very much. “Lavender is edible, isn’t it?” she questions at a suggestive purr. “Or so I’ve heard.” Maybe the cooks will decide to try making lavender pastries sometime. Or perhaps she can just get hold of his hand in a moment in taste for herself, since he was responsible for making her smell edible, after all.

“It is.” Ibrahim confirms with a laugh, trailing one finger up her body until he can reach her cheek. “Like many herbs we grow for food.” While definitely not a Healer, he’s had to learn some basics out in the jungles, if only to keep himself healthy; subsistence living is not for the weak of body or spirit. Oh, that suggestiveness — it causes a fairly obvious reaction in him, one he doesn’t bother to try and hide from her. Nearly two Turns on, and she still makes him go hot with very little overt encouragement. “Shall we go through the various kinds, my Amani?” It’d make for a messy evening, and yet — somehow the idea remains in the back of his mind, where he wonders if she’d go along with being licked repeatedly over the course of a couple hours.

Amani can’t help but grin, first for guessing correctly, but mainly for the way Ibrahim reacts. And speaking of reactions, she will take full advantage of the most obvious one, tilting her hips back against his in a teasing grind. “I think,” she replies, reaching one hand up and back to find his cheek, “that just one is plenty for tonight.” With the implication that more will probably be just fine for future evenings.

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